Almost four months have gone by since one bicyclist was killed and another was seriously injured in a collision with a North County Transit Bus in Camp Pendleton. Questions remain about the cause of the collision, and NBC San Diego has reported that federal investigators are expected to release their investigation results by the end of the month.
The bus accident took place on Stuart Mesa road on a clear and sunny day. The bus struck three cyclists for unknown reasons. One of the cyclists, a 43-year-old triathlete, died shortly after being struck. The cyclist who was seriously injured has undergone multiple surgeries and is continuing to deal with pain and suffering.
Reports state that the bus swerved out of the way in order to avoid striking the cyclists, but he then sideswiped them when getting out of the way of oncoming traffic.
Photos that have been obtained by NBC San Diego indicate a different story. The photos show that the cyclists were on the right side of the road in a single file line four seconds before the crash. The photos show that there was no oncoming traffic at this time; they also show no oncoming traffic at the time of impact.
The North Transit Bus was equipped with six cameras, providing a view of the driver, the road ahead and the inside of the bus. That footage has not been release, other than the stills that NBC has acquired.
The federal investigation should shed more light on what led the bus driver to strike these cyclists.
The driver and the transit district may be held liable for personal injury and wrongful death depending on the cause of this crash. In fact, claims have already been filed against both parties. Cyclists, of course, are no match for buses and other motor vehicles and it is imperative that drivers share the roads with cyclists and pedestrians. When drivers are distracted and when they fail to drive safely, the lives of cyclists and pedestrians are at risk. Negligent drivers and negligent transportation companies should be held accountable for their actions.
Source: NBC San Diego, "Deadly Camp Pendleton Bus Crash Investigation Revealed," Dave Summers, Nov. 23, 2013