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Court documents: Driver in 2018 school bus crash was overworked, asleep at wheel

Posted at 4:54 PM, Oct 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-05 19:44:18-04

ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. — A driver accused of sideswiping a Weld County school bus and causing it to roll was allegedly overworked and asleep at the wheel.

The bus was returning from a field trip to Elitch Gardens in July 2018 when the accident happened. The driver in the truck was working for a company called RoadSafe and was driving a company vehicle with three other people inside. According to police, 27 people on the bus were injured in the crash.

A Weld County teacher, Sadie Antuna, was seriously hurt and left with lasting injuries.

She is now suing RoadSafe. The case is set for trial on Nov. 1 in Arapahoe County District Court.

"They’re still operating. It’s scary as a parent and you think about these kids on a school bus," said Vance Larimer, an attorney representing Antuna.

Court documents show the driver, William Carroll, was on duty for 17 of the 18 days leading up to the crash. Under rules set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and State of Colorado, a motor carrier should not allow a driver to operate a commercial vehicle after having been on duty for 70 hours over eight consecutive days.

Documents show Carroll often worked more than 70 hours over an eight day period and logged 71.33 hours between June 26, 2018 and July 3, 2018.

"These guys had just left a job site and within 20 minutes, three out of the four of them fell asleep in the car," said Larimer, who says the records speak to the fatigue.

A spokesperson for RoadSafe said the company does not comment on pending litigation.

After the accident in 2018, Denver7 reported that RoadSafe had a conditional safety rating, which is considered probationary and means the motor carries does not have adequate safety measures. The company's rating has remained unchanged.