Investigators seek cause of deadly bus crash in Utah desert

The aftermath of a late-Sunday Greyhound bus crash is seen on Monday, Jan. 1, 2018 in Emery County. A 13-year-old girl died and 11 others were hospitalized when the bus went off the freeway and crashed into a steep wash. (Ben Tidswell/The Deseret News via AP)

The aftermath of a late-Sunday Greyhound bus crash is seen on Monday, Jan. 1, 2018 in Emery County. A 13-year-old girl died and 11 others were hospitalized when the bus went off the freeway and crashed into a steep wash. (Ben Tidswell/The Deseret News via AP)

The aftermath of a late-Sunday Greyhound bus crash is seen on Monday, Jan. 1, 2018 in Emery County. A 13-year-old girl died and 11 others were hospitalized when the bus went off the freeway and crashed into a steep wash. (Ben Tidswell/The Deseret News via AP)

This early Monday, Jan. 1, 2018, photo released by Utah Department of Public Safety shows the scene of a Greyhound bus crash in rural Green River, Utah, Authorities are investigating the bus crash that killed a 13-year-old girl and injured at least 11 others. Utah's Highway Patrol says the bus headed to Las Vegas crashed Sunday night off Interstate 70 west of the Utah city of Green River. The bus went off the highway shoulder into a steep wash and stopped about 200 feet away from the road. The bus driver and two passengers were airlifted in serious condition to hospitals in Colorado and Utah. Eight others were also hospitalized. (Utah Department of Public Safety via AP)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Investigators on Tuesday were combing through a mangled Greyhound bus to determine what caused it to careen from a road in the Utah desert on New Year’s Eve, killing a 13-year-old girl and injuring 12 other people.

The bus was carrying 14 people, including the driver, when it drifted off the shoulder of Interstate 70 and crashed about 300 miles (483 kilometers) south of Salt Lake City.

A passenger reported a possible medical issue with the driver, the Utah Highway Patrol said Monday in a news release.

The agency did not immediately respond to phone messages Tuesday seeking further comment about the investigation and the conditions of those injured.

Utah Highway Patrol Lt. Steve Salas told the Desert News on Monday that no other motorists witnessed the crash and some bus passengers had flagged down a truck driver for help.

Most of the injured people had neck and back injuries, he said. A few had broken bones and one had a fractured skull.

Authorities identified the girl killed as Summer Pinzon of Azusa, California. She was traveling with her mother, who was hospitalized after the crash.

Authorities did not release the mother’s name or additional details about her and her daughter.

The bus driver and two passengers were taken by helicopters in serious condition to hospitals. Other injured passengers were taken to hospitals by ambulances.

Lanesha Gipson, a spokeswoman for Greyhound, did not have details Monday about the driver but said the company is cooperating with authorities and conducting its own investigation.

Gipson did not return a phone message Tuesday seeking updates on the company’s investigation.

ADVERTISEMENT