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Galveston bus driver charged with homicide for pedestrian death

Not everyone in Galveston may be aware that when a bicyclist is riding his or her bicycle, they must obey the rules of the road for bicycling but when the bicyclist gets off their bike to walk it, they become a pedestrian and pedestrian rules apply.

Recently, a 75-year-old man was walking his bike on 51st Street to cross Broadway in Galveston and thus was a pedestrian when he was struck by a school bus as it turned the corner. The 75-year-old died at the scene of the accident. The pedestrian accident was widely reported and may have been traumatic for the 28 students from Ball High School that were passengers at the time.

The bus driver submitted to the alcohol and drug screening tests, as is typically required. Police indicate that alcohol and drugs were not thought to be factors in the accident. The critical factor may have been driver distraction.

There was apparently more than one surveillance camera which caught a view of the substitute bus driver as she was turning the corner. The video appears to show that the bus driver was reading some papers that were in her lap at the time of the accident. If that turns out to be a proven fact, she could be considered negligent in causing the accident. At this point in time she has been charged with criminally negligent homicide. If convicted, she could serve two years in jail and pay a fine of $10,000.

In addition to the criminal consequences, the 50-year-old bus driver could be sued in civil court for the wrongful death of the 75-year-old man.

Source: KWTX, "Substitute Texas School Bus Driver Charged In Deadly Accident," July 27, 2012

Source: Click2Houston, "Bus driver charged in pedestrian's death," July 26, 2012

At our Galveston law firm, we represent the surviving family members who lost a loved one in a wrongful death accident such as the one mentioned in this posting.

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