Appeals Court Upholds Driver Convictions in Fatal Virginia Bus Accident
Last Tuesday, the Virginia Court of Appeals rejected an appeal from the driver involved in a fatal Virginia bus accident that killed four passengers and injured dozens more. The driver dozed off while driving a Sky Express bus from North Carolina to New York City on May 30, 2011. As a result, the bus veered off I-95 about 30 miles north of Richmond, where it overturned.
Cheung was convicted of four counts of involuntary manslaughter. In his recent appeal, he claimed that prosecutors failed to prove that he had shown reckless disregard for the lives of his passengers. In response, the court stated that there was “ample evidence” that the driver knew he was in no condition to operate a bus. He admitted to authorities that he was “sleepy” right before the accident, and relied on heavy consumption of energy drinks to stay awake.
The appeals court stated that because of the difficulties Cheung had driving the bus in the hour before the wreck, he should have realized his impairment was risking the safety of the 57 passengers aboard his bus. This serious accident caused government safety officials to shut down over 24 similar low-fare, curbside bus operations due to safety violations. According to the NTSB, the Transportation Department had been in the process of shutting down Sky Express at the time of the accident, but had provided the company an extra 10 days to appeal their failed safety rating.
If you have been seriously injured, or if your loved one has been killed in a Virginia bus accident, please contact Kalfus & Nachman today or call (855) 880-8163 to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our experienced Roanoke injury lawyers. We represent accident victims throughout Norfolk, Hampton, Portsmouth, Roanoke, Virginia Beach, and Newport News, Virginia.