Capital Metro releases video showing head on collision

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by SHELTON GREEN / KVUE News

Bio | Email | Follow: @SheltonG_KVUE

kvue.com

Posted on February 14, 2011 at 10:11 PM

Updated Tuesday, Feb 15 at 11:08 AM

Monday’s  release of video from on board a Capital Metro bus which was hit head on by a man eluding police is an eerie reminder of the potential dangers of a bus driver’s job.

“Just every day, you always have somebody braking in front of you or cutting you off in other words,” said Juan Rodriguez, a Capital Metro bus driver for 12 years who spoke to KVUE News on Monday about the dangers bus drivers see on a daily basis.  “It takes a little longer for us to brake. We cannot brake on a dime.  Plus, we have passengers in the bus, that's the main thing, not boxes, and we really have to be careful when we brake hard."

The first part of the 40-second video clip is from bus driver Robbin Hanks’ perspective. It shows her taking a corner in the 8800 block of Georgian in North Austin when out of nowhere, a car heading in the opposite direction at a high rate of speed plows head-on into the bus.
 
The impact killed the driver of a stolen Jeep, who Austin police say caused the crash. Paul Thomas Ray, 43, was eluding police who caught him in a drug transaction at a North Austin motel.
 
While Ray’s case is not an everyday occurrence where buses are concerned, bus drivers say they do see impatient drivers who cut them off, inattentive drivers and pedestrians who pass in front of the bus on a daily basis.
 
“You're not driving only for yourself, and your passengers obviously, you're driving for everyone else that's on the street.  Just like the commercial says about the trucks and what have you, give them plenty of room. Just be aware of the buses,” pleaded Rodriguez.
 
Robbin Hanks, the Capital Metro bus driver who was injured, is an 18-year veteran with the agency. Monday night she was listed in good condition.

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