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Truck driver in deadly Palm Springs tour bus crash waives extradition

The driver of a truck that was rear-ended by a tour bus in a Palm Springs freeway crash that killed 13 people and injured 31 others has waived his extradition, according to John Hall, spokesman for the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office.

Hall told KESQ News Channel 3 that Bruce Guilford waived his extradition on Friday and could be back in Riverside County within a couple of weeks.

Guilford, 51, of Covington, Georgia, was arrested by a U.S. Marshal fugitive task force in Georgia. He was charged in October with 13 counts of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence along with felony and misdemeanor counts of reckless driving.

Read: Truck driver arrested & charged in connection with deadly Palm Springs tour bus crash

Each count corresponds to an occupant of the USA Holiday bus that plowed into the back of Guilford’s truck in the early morning hours of Oct. 23, 2016.

The bus had taken gamblers on a junket to the Red Earth Casino in Thermal and was en route back to the Los Angeles area when it slammed into the rear of Guilford’s truck.

NTSB: Tour bus driver should have seen stopped truck

Last month the National Transportation Safety Board revealed that the truck was indeed visible for 20 seconds before the tour bus hit it.

“There were other drivers traveling ahead of the bus driver who were able to see the truck, determine it was stopped, and take corrective action to avoid striking it,” Kenny Bragg, the NTSB Accident Investigator said.

The staff proposes the following probable cause:

One, the California Department of Transportation inadequate management for the traffic break which resulted in a hazardous traffic situation which law enforcement did not detect the lack of movement after the traffic break ended and the bus driver did not receive advanced warning of potential traffic ahead. The truck driver not moving likely due to his falling asleep because of his undiagnosed severe — sleep apnea. And the bus driver’s failure to avoid the crash as a result of fatigue and the fact he did not expect to encounter stopped traffic.

Stay with KESQ News Channel and CBS Local 2 for developments in this case.

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