SUV rear-ends MTS bus in Chula Vista: 21 people injured
Last Updated: 66 days ago
CHULA VISTA, Calif. - Nearly two dozen people suffered minor injuries Monday when an SUV rear-ended a bus at a South Bay intersection.
The MTS bus was picking up and dropping off passengers when a woman driving a Ford Explorer plowed into the back of the transit vehicle at East H Street and Paseo del Rey in Chula Vista shortly before 7:30 a.m., according to police.
Police believe speed and bright morning sun may have contributed to the crash.
"The sun is over the east sky and she was driving eastbound. It could have been an issue in terms of her being able to see the bus, I don't know," said Chula Vista Police Sgt. Jim Horst.
The woman's SUV sustained major front-end damage and the air bags were deployed.
"She was accelerating, she had just made a turn onto East H, it's a 55 mph road, so I'm assuming she was accelerating, she was probably accelerating when she hit the bus," said Horst.
According to MTS officials, the bus was full. Thirty-five to 40 people were onboard, with 25 of them were standing when they felt the jolt from behind. Twenty passengers and the driver of the SUV were taken to four different hospitals -- including Sharp Chula Vista, Scripps, Paradise Valley and Sharp Coronado.
"We're talking about neck pain, head pain, back pain; no major trauma, no open cuts or broken bones," said Chula Vista Fire Department Deputy Chief John Davidson.
According to Davidson, getting everyone to the hospital was a logistical challenge.
Twelve of the passengers were brought to Sharp Chula Vista, according to Dr. Andres Smith, the emergency services medical director.
"We're dealing with rush hour, so we're dealing with traffic, trying to get units on scene in a timely manner, and like I said, probably the biggest challenge is communication with all the exterior agencies," said Davidson.
10News learned the SUV's driver was cited for not having insurance, but police said an investigation would take weeks to determine if more citations would be issued.
Copyright 2013 Scripps Media, Inc. City News Service contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.