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Accident Report Detail

 
Interstate Bus Automobile Collision and Rollover on Indiana Route 57

Executive Summary

‚ÄčAt 5:15 a.m., e.s.t., on November 24, 1969, a scheduled interstate bus carrying 27 passengers was traveling south on lndiana Route 57, in a dense, freezing fog and complete darkness, at 45 miles per hour. While rounding a 3 degree curve to the right, and approaching the intersection of County Road 125-S (Oatsville Road), 5.6 miles south of Petersburg, Indiana, the busdriver saw headlights of a car which he thought was entering Route 57 from the west and coming toward him. He steered the bus to the right and applied the brakes sharply. However, the car was standing on County Road 125-S, waiting to enter Route 57 from the west. The bus swerved clockwise, skidded sideways and struck the car broadside. The car was pushed some 110 feet south onto Route 57. The bus continued to slide sideways in a southwesterly direction, and rolled over 270 degrees onto a turfed embankment. No fire ensued.

Neither the busdriver nor any of the passengers were injured during the impact with the car. However, the driver and all passengers were injured during the bus rollover: a female infant passenger was ejected and fatally injured. Only three of the passengers sustained serious injuries. The driver of the car (its only occupant) was slightly injured.


Probable Cause

‚ÄčThe Safety Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was that the busdriver misjudged the location of the automobile because of the illusion created by the fog. Contributing factors were the excessive speed of the bus in dense fog on a wet road and the geometries of the intersection which compounded the illusory effects of the fog.


Accident Location: Petersburg , IN    
Accident Date: 11/24/1969
Accident ID: 79833

Date Adopted: 2/10/1971
NTSB Number: HAR-71-04
NTIS Number: PB-199380

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