Tour bus heading for Washington crashes in Tulare

TULARE, Calif.

The collision sent more than a dozen people to area hospitals. It happened on Highway 99 near Paige Avenue in Tulare.

The California Highway Patrol says 17 people on board the bus and the big rig had minor injuries. And as far as the crash, the impact could have been much more serious.

A Fronteras Del Norte tour bus and a semi collided in Tulare County on Highway 99. The bus' window was broken and the front smashed from the collision.

The bus driver, Isais Ortiz said, "I don't know what happened. He applied the brakes and I was behind him and I can't do nothing. I applied the brakes as much as I can."

36 people including the driver and three children were on the bus. We're told many of the passengers, were asleep when the crash happened.

Officer Scott Harris with the California Highway Patrol said, "Luckily the impact wasn't really really bad. I'm sure once the bus came to a stop that's when things went downhill, but luckily for everyone in the vehicle it wasn't that severe."

A majority of the patients were taken to Kaweah Delta Medical Center in Visalia as well as hospitals in Hanford and Tulare.

Gary Mancillas was inside Kaweah Delta Medical Center and spoke with passengers.

"Most of them were minor injuries but there were a few of them that were limping, one of them had a neck brace," said Mancillas. "A majority of them got on the bus, but there's a few that didn't. Some of them, their families came and picked them up."

Action News was there as second Fronteras bus picked up the remaining passengers that wanted to go on to their final destination.

The investigation is still under way by the CHP. Officers say the driver could be issued citations if found at fault.

The CHP says there were no weather advisories or fog in the area.

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