The national meth crisis has led to impaired driving and now plays a role in commercial vehicle accidents. Indiana State Police recently arrested a 46-year-old bus driver for reckless homicide and other charges because he was allegedly high on meth when his bus crashed into the back of a minivan. Three people were killed in the July 2017 accident.
On July 22, the minivan and other vehicles were idling in a construction zone north of Bloomington. The bus collision caused a chain reaction with these vehicles. It was traveling at 65 mph before the crash, according to its GPS system. Three occupants in the minivan were killed in the bus crash. Three other people in the vehicles suffered injuries.
The bus driver told deputies that he was distracted by looking down and trying to kick away ice before the crash. He looked up and saw the minivan. A blood test taken after the accident, however, revealed that there was amphetamine and methamphetamine in his system.
In addition to three counts of reckless homicide, police also charged him with multiple counts of operating a vehicle while having a schedule I or II controlled substance in his blood and causing serious bodily injury when operating a vehicle with these drugs in his body.
The transportation company which owns the bus involved in this accident issued a statement that its drivers must undergo tests and certifications before operating their buses. These include pre-employment drug testing, a commercial driver's license, a physical, a background check and a road test. It also said that random drug testing is performed on its drivers.
It claimed that the bus driver underwent this process. The company terminated his employment after the accident and referred him for treatment.
Victims of a commercial vehicle accident may be entitled to compensation for their losses. An attorney should be promptly consulted to help assure that evidence is obtained and that a lawsuit may commence.
Source: Fox 59, "Prosecutor: Bus driver high on meth before fatal crash," Oct. 6, 2017