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Mark Favaloro
Mark Favaloro
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Eight Die in Horrible Tennessee Church Bus Head-On Collision, 14 Others Injured

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1380742297000-bus-crash-9Trent Roberts was 24 years-old, attending community college, an avid fisherman and outdoorsman.  Mose Farmer was 66-years-old and from New Orleans.  He was a hard worker who drove a tractor trailer for a living.  Barbara and Ed Morrison had been married for decades.  Barbara mentored children at a Statesville school and Ed was always at church, always cooking, helping whenever he was needed. 

What do all these people have in common?  They and four others lost their lives in a fatal accident involving a North Carolina (NC) church bus, a tractor trailer, and an SUV on I-40 in Jefferson County, Tennessee.  Fourteen other people were seriously injured many of those were in their 60’s and 70’s and will have a long path to recovery. 

The reason behind the crash is not operator error, which is typically the reason behind many commercial bus crashes, but instead a faulty tire.  Police say the tire lost pressure and the rim of the wheel ground into the pavement wrenching control from the driver and sending the vehicle head-on into opposing traffic.

As investigators continue to sort through the details of the horrific church bus crash it seems the bus may not have been registered with the USDOT.  Regulations issued by the FMCSA say all church buses and other private motor carriers that cross state lines are required to have a USDOT number.  Such registration ensures that buses have rigorous safety inspections.  As a Carolina car accident attorney, I can only wonder if the vehicle had been registered and inspected, would this crash have happened?

Due to the horrific loss of life most families are very unfamiliar with the types of damages recoverable under state laws for wrongful deaththat results from negligent conduct, including that type of behavior behind the wheel of a car.  In this case family members who attend the church may be hesitant to bring a claim, but this is why we all collectively carry insurance policies–to protect us and to pay for recovery in difficult circumstances.