The bus driver under investigation for Sunday’s horrific bus crash which left six dead and 12 wounded was allegedly using his phone and driving wildly in the moments leading up to the accident.
Driver Haim Bitton, is in police custody facing possible wrongful death charges, obstructions of justice, and failure to maintain distance from other cars on the road.
According to the Yediot Ahronot newspaper, two passengers on the fateful bus ride, Bracha Sperling and her sister Sarah, called another sister during the ride telling her that “the driver is driving like a madman and is talking on his cell phone”. Moments later the bus crashed. Screaming was heard at the end of the call before it was disconnected.
The Egged bus company has come under fire for putting Bitton back to work as a bus driver following a conviction relating to a 2014 crash which left 18 injured. Bitton was found guilty of reckless driving and failure to maintain a safe distance behind other vehicles.
The fatal accident on Sunday occurred after a truck driver traveling on Highway 1 between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem noticed an oil leak and pulled over to the shoulder of the road. As the bus was passing the stopped truck it veered out of the lane and into the shoulder, crashing into the right side of the truck.