Bus driver in fatal crash charged with vehicular homicide

Posted on March 16, 2010
Footage from an onboard recorder shows a school bus turning into the path of an oncoming car. The bus driver was charged with homicide by vehicle in the crash, which killed the passenger of the car and injured others.
Footage from an onboard recorder shows a school bus turning into the path of an oncoming car. The bus driver was charged with homicide by vehicle in the crash, which killed the passenger of the car and injured others.

ZIEGLERVILLE, Pa. — A school bus driver was driving “in an extremely reckless manner” when his bus struck a car, killing the passenger, according to the county district attorney.

The bus driver in the Feb. 17 accident, Frederick Robert Poust III, was arrested Tuesday for homicide by vehicle and numerous counts of recklessly endangering other persons.

Investigators said that Poust, transporting 45 middle school students, was attempting to turn left into a school driveway. Footage from an onboard recorder shows the bus turning into the path of an oncoming car.

Poust “operated the school bus in a negligent and recklessness manner, improperly entering the eastbound lane of traffic and causing the accident,” a statement from Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman said.

The passenger of the car was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the car was taken to a hospital with serious injuries. Five students on the bus sustained minor injuries.

Authorities said the video footage prior to the crash showed that Poust had run 10 stop signs. He also allegedly was fatigued after working a night shift in his security job and talked on a cell-phone headset while driving the bus (although apparently not at the time of the crash).

“He's tired, he's exhausted, he's distracted,” Ferman said. “He's listening to music. He's talking on the phone. He's ignoring stop signs and basically ignoring every safety precaution you would want a school bus driver to pay attention to.”

The district attorney noted that this was the second fatal accident that Poust has caused. In 1999 (before he was a school bus driver), Poust failed to stop at a stop sign and struck another vehicle. The crash killed a 2-year-old girl and injured her mother.

“Knowing that past history and then seeing the driving that was going on that day just outrages all of us,” Ferman said. “It is impossible to think that someone who had taken the life of a child could be so reckless on this particular day while carrying more children.”


Related Topics: cell phones, distracted driving, driver fatigue, school bus crash, video surveillance

Comments ( 14 )
  • Joe

     | about 7 years ago

    What I question is, who monitors the video from that bus service. Why weren't his habbits discovered on video's prior to loss of life? I've been driving school buses since 1984, and I find this video very upsetting because his habbits and neglegence were so strong. Video's have to be monitored on a regular basis. Not after something happens. I would like to believe that if his video's were monitored regularly, he would have lost his job long before this accident happened. Which means, the accident wouldn't have happened. My thoughts go out to the victims involved. Joe

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