Teen driver arrested in fatal bus crash

Posted on July 26, 2010

HARTFORD, Conn. — State police have arrested the teenage driver involved in a crash with a school bus that killed one student and spurred efforts to get seat belts on buses in Connecticut.

Christopher Toppi, who is now 17 but was 16 at the time of the Jan. 9 accident, was advised of a warrant for his arrest and turned himself on Tuesday.

Toppi was charged with negligent homicide with motor vehicle, failure to drive in established lane, and driving too fast for conditions. He was released on bond and is scheduled to appear in court Aug. 2.

Authorities said that no additional arrests are expected in the case.

According to the police report on the crash, the left side of the school bus and the right side of the teen’s car collided. The bus went off the roadway to the right, through a metal beam guide rail and down an embankment. The car ended up in the left shoulder.

Bus passenger Vikas Parikh, 16, was killed in the crash. At least four other students sustained serious injuries.

After the accident, a state bill to require three-point belts on school buses ultimately was voted down, but a subsequent bill to provide a sales tax break for new buses equipped with three-point belts was signed into law.


Related Topics: fatalities, school bus crash, seat belts

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