5 passengers injured in fatal bus crash still in intensive care: bus driver charged with negligent homicide

Five passengers from a group of 39 who were injured, one fatally, when a bus overturned in Yilan County yesterday, remain in a critical condition, and the bus driver has been charged with negligent homicide following a preliminary investigation into the crash.

Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board investigated the scene of the crash yesterday evening, and again this morning. Investigators recorded marks and scratches on the road surface that extended more than 100 meters, along with impact-damaged guardrails and mountain wall. Evidence showed that after the driver lost control of the bus, it crashed into the guardrail on the left-hand side of the road, then careered into the mountain wall on the right before overturning onto its side.

marks on road and damaged guardrail on approach to curve on downhill section of road

Investigators also interviewed the bus driver, who claimed that he was driving slowly when the bus engine stalled, and he tried to apply the foot brake, but it malfunctioned, and even after applying the handbrake he was unable to slow down and stop the vehicle.

Yilan County Police took a formal statement from the 48-year-old driver, named Guo, and handed Guo over to the Yilan District Prosecutor’s Office to be charged on suspicion of negligent homicide. Guo was charged and released on bail of NT$200,000.

A total of 39 people were injured in the crash. One lost vital signs at the scene of the accident and was later declared dead at the hospital. Twenty-three people have been discharged after receiving medical treatment, and 13 remain hospitalized, of which 5 remain in a serious condition in the intensive care ward.

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