‘Fatigued’ driver in Greyhound crash identified

The driver of a Greyhound bus that overturned on U.S. Highway 101 in South San Jose, killing two women and injuring 17 passengers, admitted he was fatigued at the time of the crash, according to California Highway Patrol and San Jose fire officials.

The crash was reported at 6:38 a.m. near the connector ramp between northbound Highway 101 and northbound state Highway 85, CHP officials said.

Prior to the crash the driver, identified as 58-year-old Gary Bonslater of Victorville, had dropped off two passengers in Gilroy and bought coffee, CHP Officer Christopher Miceli said.

The bus was heading north toward the ramp but struck barrels placed to protect vehicles from hitting the concrete median, Miceli said.

The bus ended up landing on its right side at the median, Miceli said. There were 21 people, including the driver, aboard the bus when it crashed.

Two women who were ejected from the bus were pronounced dead at the scene and five people were quickly transported to hospitals for injuries that were considered life-threatening, according to Salcido.

The remaining passengers who didn’t need further treatment were placed onto a Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority bus, according to the CHP.

Thirteen others suffered minor injuries and five of them were eventually transported to the hospital, while the other eight were treated at the scene and released, Salcido said.

As of this afternoon, there were two people with major injuries and seven others with minor injuries at the hospital, Miceli said.

The bus driver was one of the people transported for minor injuries and has been released, Miceli said.

The driver has cooperated with investigators, according to Miceli.

Witnesses reported the bus was traveling at the speed limit, according to Miceli.

The Greyhound bus that crashed was No. 86558 and was on schedule 6876, traveling from Los Angeles to San Francisco, Greyhound spokeswoman Lanesha Gipson said.

The cause of the crash has not yet been determined, Gipson said.

“We’re cooperating fully with local authorities on their investigation and conducting our own,” she said.

Drugs and alcohol are not suspected as factors, according to the CHP.

Greyhound has set up a hotline for anyone looking for more information on any family members or friends at (800) 972-4583.

The National Transportation Safety Board is sending a team to the crash scene to conduct an independent investigation, agency spokesman Eric Weiss said.

The team will be looking at all aspects of the crash including the driver’s condition and occupant safety, Weiss said.