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Accident Report Detail

Highway Accident Report: Motorcoach Collision with Crash Attenuator in Gore Area US Highway 101, San Jose, CA

Executive Summary

On January 19, 2016, about 6:37 a.m., a 2014 Motor Coach Industries International, Inc., D4505 motorcoach, operated by Greyhound Lines, Inc., and occupied by a driver and 21 passengers, was traveling north on US Highway 101 (US-101), in San Jose, California. The weather conditions were dark, with moderate-to-heavy rain and reported winds from the east-southeast at 20 mph.

At the US-101 and State Route 85 (SR-85) interchange, the bus moved to the left and entered a 990-foot-long unmarked gore area. The gore separates the US-101 lanes from the left exit high-occupancy-vehicle lane for SR-85. A crash attenuator with a missing retroreflective object marker was positioned at the end of the gore in advance of a concrete barrier. The bus driver maintained the vehicle’s path through the gore and collided with the crash attenuator and the concrete barrier.

Following the impact, the bus traveled another 65 feet, rolled 90 degrees, and came to rest on its right side atop the concrete barrier, straddling two lanes of traffic. As a result of the crash, two passengers were ejected and died, and the driver and 13 passengers were injured.

Probable Cause

​The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the San Jose, California, crash was the failure of the California Department of Transportation to properly delineate the crash attenuator and the gore area, which would have provided improved traffic guidance. Contributing to the crash were the bus driver’s error in entering the gore and the out-of-compliance signage, which affected traffic guidance. Contributing to the severity of the injuries was the lack of passenger seat belt use.

Accident Location: San Jose , CA USA  
Accident Date: 1/19/2016
Accident ID: HWY16MH005

Date Adopted: 3/28/2017
NTSB Number: HAR1701
NTIS Number: PB2017-101430