NorCal charter bus crash: 1 dead, 30 injured

REDDING, Calif. (KABC) -- One person died and 30 others were injured after a charter bus heading from Los Angeles to Washington state crashed in northern Shasta County, the California Highway Patrol said Sunday.

The bus was traveling from Los Angeles to Pasco when it crashed on the Interstate 5 just north of Pollard Flat at about 7:40 a.m. The bus rolled over and came to rest upside-down on a frontage road.

The injuries ranged from minor to major. The passengers were taken to Mercy Medical centers in Mt. Shasta and Redding. Thirty-three people were on board. Six people were listed in serious or critical condition.

The man who died was identified as a 33-year-old male from Parlier. His name was not released pending notification of kin.

The driver was identified as Jose Victor Garcilazo, 67, of Los Angeles. He was not injured. The CHP is investigating what caused the crash. They believe the driver was possibly fatigued, but they have not confirmed that detail.

"We've got reports from passengers that the driver looked to be sleepy or fatigued," California Highway Patrol Officer Jeff Borgen said.

They did not say whether drugs or alcohol may have been involved or whether any citations or charges were planned.

"I don't know if he spaced out or I don't know, but when he was supposed to take a little turn, he went straight, the bus just lost control after that," said passenger Francisco Corona. He helped others out of the overturned bus.

"I felt like I was in a roller coaster, kind of, a lot of us were crushed, we were crushed between seats," Corona said. "The first thing I saw when I got out is that a lot of people were bleeding. There was blood all over the floors."

The same bus had struck a Denny's restaurant in Red Bluff earlier that day, the CHP said. No one was injured, but police were also investigating that incident.

The bus operator, Yellow Arrow LLC, is based in Othello, Washington. It has a current license and before Sunday had no reported accidents in the past two years, according to federal records.

The American Red Cross was helping local agencies provide the victims with care and shelter.

The crash was on the same freeway about 90 miles away from the spot where in April another charter bus from Southern California collided with a FedEx tractor-trailer, killing 10 people.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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