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Florida farm workers killed after pickup truck side swipes bus

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Published Time: 15.05.2024 - 02:40:16 Modified Time: 15.05.2024 - 02:40:16

Police charging man over eight deaths say he drove the Ford Ranger while under the influence of drugs or alcohol At least eight people were killed and more than 40 others hospitalised after a bus carrying farm workers in northern Florida collided with a pickup truck and overturned

Police charging man over eight deaths say he drove the Ford Ranger while under the influence of drugs or alcohol


At least eight people were killed and more than 40 others hospitalised after a bus carrying farm workers in northern Florida collided with a pickup truck and overturned.

The driver of the pickup truck survived the wreck and was later charged with eight counts of manslaughter while driving under the influence, officials said.

Officials said the labourers were on their way to pick melons at Cannon Farms in Dunnellon, a small farming community about 80 miles northwest of Orlando, when the bus overturned.

The bus crashed through a fence and rolled after side-swiping a pickup truck and careening off the roadway, said Steve Gaskins, a spokesman for Florida Highway Patrol.

The deadly accident occurred at around 6.35 am on a hilly and rain-slicked rural road, the department said.

Officials said the pickup truck, a 2001 Ford Ranger, “travelled toward the centerline” of the road and collided with the bus.

: Doug Engle

The bus barrelled off the road, crashed through a fence, struck a tree and overturned in a field, according to Lieutenant Pat Riordan from the Florida Highway Patrol.

A total of 53 people were on the bus at the time of the accident. In addition to the fatalities, at least eight passengers are reported to be critically injured.

Given the severity of their condition, there was a “high probability” that the death toll could rise, Lt Riordan said.

“At this point, we are conducting a massive traffic homicide investigation,” he said.

: Octavio Jones

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