Second Lawsuit Filed in Deadly Bus Crash - NBC Southern California

Coverage of a fiery bus crash involving Southern California students

Second Lawsuit Filed in Deadly Bus Crash



    Student Injured in Bus Crash Files Lawsuit

    A student injured in a Northern California motor coach crash involving a FedEx truck says he doesn't have time to be angry. Patrick Healy reports for the NBC4 News at Noon on Wednesday May 7, 2014. (Published Wednesday, May 7, 2014)

    A Southern California student who survived a deadly collision between a tour bus and a FedEx truck said the only thing he remembered as he was sitting behind the bus driver who died was bracing for impact, then nothing.

    Miles Hill, who spoke to the media Wednesday as he announced a lawsuit in the crash, said he is thankful to be alive.

    “I shouldn't be here," said Hill during a Wednesday press conference. "I’m here. I gotta focus on being here. I can’t be mad at things that happened. Yes, it happened. But I’m alive, so that’s more important than anything."

    Man Killed in Bus Crash Remembered as Helpful Counselor

    [LA] Man Killed in Bus Crash Remembered as Helpful Counselor
    Arthur Arzola was chaperoning Southern California students to Humboldt State University Thursday when his tour bus was hit head-on by truck. Those who knew the Rancho Cucamonga resident remembered him as a young man who always wanted to help. Gordon Tokumatsu reports from outside Arzola's Rancho Cucamonga home for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Friday, April 11, 2014.
    (Published Friday, April 11, 2014)

    Hill, an 18-year-old student at the Renaissance Arts Academy in Eagle Rock, continues to recover from a broken collarbone, burns and the mental pain from the crash that killed 10.

    His father said that because of the trauma, his son can only attend school for four hours a day. He is assigned recommended reading at home.

    "Miles has to heal," said his attorney Christine Spagnoli. "He has to heal physically. He has to heal emotionally."

    South Bay Teen Survives Orland Bus Crash

    [LA] South Bay Teen Survives Orland Bus Crash
    A Wilmington teenager is lucky to be alive after escaping from Thursday's fiery tour bus crash with only minor injuries. Hetty Chang spoke to Karen Duarte's family and reports from LAX for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Friday, April 11, 2014.
    (Published Friday, April 11, 2014)

    The student, a violinist who has played for the president and a California governor, said he plans to attend San Francisco State University to study computer science.

    His negligence suit was filed Tuesday in Los Angeles Superior Court. It names FedEx Corp. and Silverado Stages, the San Luis Obispo-based owners of the charter bus, which had been carrying college-bound students to Humboldt State University for a tour.

    It was the second such suit filed in Los Angeles in connection with the April 10 crash, in which five students and five adults were killed when the tour bus was struck head-on by the FedEx truck on the Golden State (5) Freeway in Orland.

    Hill said he tried to stay calm and still be of assistance to others while trying to escape. But he said he was doing what anyone else would under the circumstances.

    “I wouldn't call myself a hero,” he said.

    Hill said he did not know beforehand how to get out of the bus in case of an emergency.

    Bus Crash Investigators Turn to 911 Tapes for Clues

    [LA] Bus Crash Investigators Turn to 911 Tapes for Clues
    The 911 calls from the last week's I-5 crash scene in Orland are being closely looked at by authorities as investigators try to piece together what happened before a FedEx truck crashed head-on into a tour bus full of high school students. Patrick Healy reports from Orland for the NBC4 News at 5 and 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 17, 2014.
    (Published Thursday, April 17, 2014)

    “There were no safety instructions,” he said.

    His father said he did not immediately know where his son was taken after the accident or his condition.

    “From that moment until I saw him, it was sheer terror,” Gaylord Hill said.

    911 Calls Reveal Chilling Moments After Bus Crash

    [LA] 911 Calls Reveal Chilling Moments After Bus Crash
    The 911 call released Thursday, April 17, 2014, reveals audible cries of fear in the moments after a tour bus carrying high school students crashed in Northern California.
    (Published Thursday, April 17, 2014)

    He described his son as “pretty level-headed” and said he hopes the lawsuit will help prevent similar situations from happening to others.

    FedEx spokeswoman Bonnie Kourvelas could not be immediately reached for comment.

    However, she issued a statement on behalf of the company after the first suit against FedEx was filed on April 22 by the mother of Dorsey High School student Jennifer Bonilla, who was killed in the accident.

    That statement said the company was “focused on providing support to those affected and cooperating with the authorities as they conduct their investigation. This is not the time for us to discuss potential litigation."

    The Hill lawsuit, which seeks unspecified compensatory damages and compensation for medical expenses, alleges FedEx driver Timothy Evans -- who was killed in the crash -- negligently crossed from the southbound lanes of the freeway into the path of the northbound bus.

    The plaintiff alleges the company failed to inspect the big rig to make sure it was safe to operate and would not create “an unreasonable risk of injury” to others, and further alleges that the Silverado tour bus did not have a safe method of escape in the event of such an emergency, causing Hill to be trapped inside for a time.

    “I was in a field across from the bus. The bus was on fire, and my head was bleeding,” he recalled. “There were burns all over me, and I was in massive amounts of pain. But I wasn't trying to focus on that. I was trying to stay calm and think about, ‘I'm going to make it out of this. I'm going to be OK.’”

    City News Service contributed to this report.

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