Four people were killed and 42 were injured when a charter bus crashed in North Carolina. Two of the injured were flown to Chapel Hill. The bus was reportedly carrying Clinton College students playing for Ramah Juco Academy, a football team for college students who don’t have the sport at their school. Clinton College is in Rock Hill, South Carolina.
The bus was traveling to Fayetteville, North Carolina, where Ramah Juco Academy was to play University of God’s Chosen Disciples today. It hit an overpass bridge on the NC Highway 74 bypass, at N.C. milemarker 177, near the town of Hamlet, located about 56 miles west of Fayetteville.
The preliminary investigation found that the left tire of the bus blew out, causing the bus driver to lose control. The bus traveled out-of-control and then hit the median guardrail and sideswiped a concrete bridge column.
Our thoughts are with those injured and the families and friends of those who did not survive.
When a tire blow-out is suspected of causing a crash, the investigation needs to dig deeper and determine why that tire failed, according to attorney Fred Pritzker. The treads should be examined to look at the wear pattern and to determine if there was separation. The air pressure in the intact tires should be measured. If these were underfilled, there is a high likelihood that the tire that blew out was also underfilled.
Bus driver negligence, including speeding and distracted driving, should also be looked at as a possible cause or contributing factor of the accident. Fred Pritkzer represents clients in personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits against bus drivers and charter bus companies.