The crash that killed at least 24 Russians on a tour bus in southern Israel on Tuesday was caused by road rage, according to Israel's transportation minister.
Transportation Minister Shaul Mofaz told reporters at the crash site near the Red Sea resort of Eilat that two bus drivers were arguing over who would cross an army checkpoint first.
“The drivers were bullying each other," Mofaz said. "There aren't infrastructure problems on the road. "This accident was the result of the drivers' thuggery. Two bus drivers argued between themselves over who would pass the northern checkpoint on the road."
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His claim came amid revelations that Edward Gelfond, the 39-year-old driver of the bus that plunged into a ravine, had 22 prior traffic convictions, even though his license was valid.
In the deadliest traffic accident in Israel’s history, Gelfond reportedly tried to overtake the other bus on a steep, winding road.
But he told reporters that "something fell" on him while he was trying to pass the other bus, causing him to lose control.