A trip to a casino turned tragic. I extend my condolences to the families of the victims of yesterday’s fatal tour bus accident in Austin, Minnesota. This sad event adds to the terrible toll of commercial vehicle crashes on our roadways.
The bus, reportedly operated by Strain Bus Line Motorcoach Tours in Rochester, MN, was traveling eastbound on Interstate 90 just west of Austin in the early afternoon when it crossed into westbound lanes and then crashed. The bus was bound for the Diamond Jo Casino in Northwood, Iowa at the time of the crash. Minnesota State Patrolmen responding to the scene report that the road was clear and dry at the time of the accident and that the number of fatalities is unknown at this time.
I have experience handling this type of crash. Often speed or equipment failure due to inadequate maintenance is discovered to have played a role. From the facts that have been reported, there is no reason for this type of tragedy to occur. The law has a Latin phrase that seems to fit these facts: res ipsa loquitor–the thing speaks for itself.
It is essential for motor carrier inspectors, police, and lawyers along with accident reconstructionists to determine exactly what occurred and whether the driver was fatigued, on a cell phone, or otherwise distracted. It is also important to determine if mechanical defects, such as improperly adjusted brakes, were involved.
If you or someone you know needs legal advice about an accident with a semi-truck or other commercial vehicle, contact our truck accident attorneys for a free consultation.