Fatal Charter Bus Accident Could Take a Month to Investigate
PENDLETON, Ore. -- The tour bus crash outside Pendleton that killed nine people and sent at least 39 others to area hospitals is still under investigation.
Oregon State Police say it could take up to four weeks of investigating the crash, reconstructing the scene and interviewing survivors before they know exactly what happened. They did interview the driver who is among the injured, and depending on what happens with this investigation, prosecutors have to decide if he will face any charges.
Officials estimate 49 people, ages ranging from 7-74 were onboard the Mi Joo Tour and Travel Bus traveling from Las Vegas to Vancouver, British Columbia.
Many of their ID's and passports were still onboard so identifying the injured and deceased has been a challenge.
"I tried to have a plan A, plan B, plan C and we probably went further down the alphabet than that." said Pendleton Fire Department Chief Gary Woodson.
Crews finally got to tow the bus Monday afternoon. First responders also faced challenges, such as getting to the victims down the embankment.
"We were literally carrying people with four six personnel, carrying back boards up the hill side and then hoisting them up to the roadway," Woodson said.