Tour bus crash kills 5, injures dozens in California


At least five people were killed and dozens more injured Tuesday afternoon when a charter bus carrying French tourists overturned on a California roadway, authorities said.

The accident occurred at about 3:25 p.m. on a Highway 101 overpass north of Soledad, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Emergency crews arrived to find the Orion Pacific tour bus on its side, with luggage and clothing strewn on the highway. The crash ejected four passengers from the vehicle, sending one over the side of the road and onto railroad tracks 60 to 70 feet below. Two victims were pronounced dead on the roadway.

The day-night tour bus was carrying 34 French tourists, a Canadian tour guide and an American driver. It was carrying travelers from France who were heading from San Francisco to Santa Maria, officials at Orion Pacific said.

A spokeswoman at Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital said besides those killed, several of the injured were in critical condition.

According to authorities, no other vehicles were involved and that the cause of the crash is under investigation.

[Image via Monterey County Herald]