Phoenix cheerleading bus struck by semi in California – Arizona News

Phoenix cheerleading bus struck by semi in California – Arizona News


Sherry Barkas, The Desert Sun

Published 10:50 a.m. MT June 29, 2017 | Updated 8 hours ago

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INDIO, Calif. — Four people were injured in a fiery crash involving a big-rig and a charter bus carrying a group of cheerleaders near Mecca that closed westbound lanes of Interstate 10, backing up traffic for hours.

Among the injured were the bus driver, Manuel Valdivia of Phoenix, and three cheerleaders. All were taken to Desert Regional Medical Center for treatment of minor injuries, the California Highway Patrol reported.

Initially reported as a non-injury crash, a CHP official later said that four of the roughly 30 bus passengers, ages 13 and younger, were taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital with minor to moderate injuries.

The bus was headed home to Arizona from a cheerleading camp at UCLA, the CHP reported.

MORE: Record 5 million travelers hitting the road this holiday

The crash occurred at about 4:15 p.m. on eastbound I-10 when Valdivia slowed the bus in the No. 1 lane as he approached stopped traffic. 

Truck driver Rene Aragon of Fontana was traveling in the eastbound No. 2 lane in a 2016 Volvo semi-truck with two trailers, at a speed too fast to stop, the CHP reported.

He hit the brakes and to avoid a collision turned the truck to the left, colliding with the rear of the tour bus, officials said.

Truck crosses median, enters opposite lanes

The truck continued across the wide center median and ended up blocking the westbound…

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