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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation H-15-010
Synopsis: About 9:05 p.m. central daylight time on Friday, September 26, 2014, a 2013 Peterbilt truck-tractor in combination with a 2014 Great Dane semitrailer, operated by a 53-year-old male, was traveling north in the left lane of Interstate 35 (I-35) near Davis, in Murray County, Oklahoma. At the same time, a 2008 Champion Defender 32-passenger medium-size bus, operated by a 48-year-old male, was traveling south in the right lane of I-35, transporting 15 female members of the North Central Texas College softball team. Near mile marker 47, after negotiating a slight rightward curve, the combination vehicle departed the left lane and entered the 92 foot wide depressed earthen median at an angle of approximately 2 degrees. It continued through the median at an average angle of 2–9 degrees and traveled more than 1,100 feet as it traversed the median. The combination vehicle then entered the I-35 southbound lanes and collided with the left side of the medium-size bus, as the bus driver steered to the right in an attempt to avoid the collision. Following the impact, the medium-size bus rolled onto its right side, and the combination vehicle continued off the roadway and into a wooded area. As a result of the crash, four bus passengers died. The remaining passengers received minor-to-serious injuries and were transported to area hospitals for treatment. The combination vehicle driver and the bus driver sustained minor injuries.
Recommendation: TO THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION: Develop requirements addressing the minimum aisle width for safe evacuation from all buses, including those with moveable seats.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Open - Acceptable Response
Mode: Highway
Location: Davis, OK, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Accident #: HWY14MH014
Accident Reports: ​Preliminary Report Highway HWY14MH014 Truck-Tractor Semitrailer Median Crossover Collision With Medium-Size Bus on Interstate 35, Davis, Oklahoma, September 26, 2014
Report #: HAR-15-03
Accident Date: 9/26/2014
Issue Date: 7/20/2015
Date Closed:
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: NHTSA (Open - Acceptable Response)

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
Date: 11/13/2017
Response: We note that you are reassessing your previous emergency evacuation research to determine your course of action regarding this recommendation. Pending publication of the recommended requirements addressing minimum bus aisle width, Safety Recommendation H 15 10 is classified OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

Date: 7/11/2017
Response: -From Jack Danielson, Acting Deputy Administrator: NHTSA continues to work toward addressing recommendation H-15-10 on motorcoach emergency egress. In 2010, NHTSA completed human factors research studies with the Volpe National Transportation System Center to evaluate emergency evacuation designs in current motorcoaches and buses. Volpe evaluated various egress strategies, including egress through windows of motorcoaches, and determined factors affecting egress rates. The final reports for this research work were completed in 2010 and are published in Docket No. NHTSA-2007-28793-22 and -24. We are reassessing the results of this research for applicability to this recommendation in order to determine NHTSA's next course of action. We request that recommendation H-15-10 be classified as "Open - Acceptable Action."