Crash Video Puts Muni Driver in the Hot Seat

By Jessica Greene
|  Wednesday, Apr 7, 2010  |  Updated 10:15 AM PDT
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Crash Video Puts Muni Driver in the Hot Seat

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Surveillance video on the Muni bus shows the driver looking down for several seconds before the bus crashed into a parked pickup.

Onboard video of crash last month between a Muni bus and a parked car near Potrero Hill is raising questions about whether the driver was paying attention.

Scroll down to see video from the Muni camera. It shows the bus driver looking down and reaching for something as the bus barrels down the road. A split-second later, the bus crashed into the pickup near the intersection of 25th and Dakota streets. The crash send the only passenger aboard the bus to a hospital.

The driver in that crash, an 11-year Muni veteran, has been placed on non-driving status for the investigation.

It's not the first time onboard video of a Muni crash is putting the driver's focus in question. In January, a crash at 18th and De Haro Streets captured on camera shows the driver of that bus glance out the window just before crashing into a pickup.

Muni officials said that in that case, both vehicles rolled through STOP signs.

The Potrero Hill crash video came to light on the same day a Muni train and bus collided, injuring several people. Investigators say the the F-Townsend train crashed into the 10-Townsend bus, which then hit another car. Seven people were treated for minor injuries at the scene; five were taken to a hospital. The drivers of both trains were taken to the hospital.

The street car operator in that crash says he hit the brakes but they did not work.

Both drivers will be tested for drugs and alcohol and are will be placed on non-driving status, as is standard procedure.

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