RIO DE JANEIRO – A police officer investigating a deadly crash in which a bus plunged from a 10-meter (30-foot) high viaduct onto one of Rio de Janeiro's busiest thoroughfares said Wednesday he plans to indict the driver and an angry passenger who allegedly fought just before the accident.
José Pedro da Costa Silva is quoted by G1, the internet portal of the Globo television network, as saying he plans to indict both on involuntary homicide charges in the deaths of seven people in Tuesday's crash. Eleven people were injured in the accident, and both the driver and the angry passenger have been hospitalized.
Survivor Amanda Santana Silva told Brazil's Globo television network that a passenger became enraged when the bus driver, after skipping several stops, didn't leave the doors open long enough for him to get off. Silva, a 19-year-old pharmaceutical student, said the passenger jumped the turnstile and struck the driver. Moments later, the bus hurtled off the viaduct.
Buses are the main form of public transit in this city of 6 million, despite their often questionable safety records. Rio's buses, operated by private companies, are notorious for chronic overcrowding and for driving at high speeds and frequently running red lights.