Local News

Bus Driver Had Previous Speeding Convictions

Posted January 3, 2008

— The driver of a Greyhound bus that rear-ended a flatbed truck Wednesday morning and flipped along U.S. Highway 1 in Vance County had been convicted twice of speeding.

Nearly 50 passengers were taken to local hospitals after the bus collided with the tractor-trailer at Raleigh Road and U.S. 1 south of Henderson.

The North Carolina Highway Patrol said the bus failed to slow down when the truck slowed to make a left turn. The bus hit the truck, then ran off the road and down and embankment before rolling onto its side.

The bus driver, Keith Lamont Small, 62, of Durham, and passenger Effie Peguef were listed in critical condition at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill Thursday afternoon.

Some passengers questioned whether Small fell asleep at the wheel.

Trooper James Montgomery of the state Highway Patrol said the truck driver wasn't at fault in the wreck, but no charges have been filed yet against Small because of his condition.

Court records show that Small was convicted of speeding in Durham County in 2002 and in Rowan County in 2001. It was unclear whether he was driving a bus in either of those incidents.

Forty-nine bus passengers were taken to Maria Parham Hospital in Henderson, where they were treated and released.

The driver of the tractor-trailer, Gregory Jefferson, of Henderson, and his passenger, Angela Lynette Williams, 34, of Henderson, weren't injured.

The bus was being operated by Carolina Trailways, a subsidiary of Greyhound, and was traveling from Richmond, Va., to Raleigh.


Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • Nancy Jan 3, 2008

    I wonder what the criteria is for hiring drivers for these bus companies? Does anyone know? What is 'forgivable' in their driver history and still makes them eligible to be a hired driver?

    For example, Wake County School Bus drivers must have a clean record for a minimum of 5 years - and if, while employed as a bus driver you get ANY moving violation, you're removed from driving permanently unless your violation is dismissed by the courts.

  • Go Georgia Tech Jan 3, 2008

    If you have ever been on a greyhound bus and seen their drivers-- you kind of expect this... (our school trip to DC when I younger used greyhound to get us there)- that experience was enough for me and greyhound to part ways-- forever.!

  • Cable Jan 3, 2008

    So... ok they had some speeding tickets.. and your point is Media? Does it prove that they were speeding?

  • Hip-Shot Jan 3, 2008

    If I were convicted of Jaywalking many years ago does that mean I am unsafe to conduct a guided tour of my employer's facilty? Most everyone has gotten a ticket for something, usually speeding, and the insurance company only assigns points to your license for 3 years. Get a life. my son-in-law drives 18-wheelers, and he had a speding ticket many years ago, does that make him unsafe now?

  • richard2 Jan 3, 2008

    Nearly everybody speeds, most don't get caught.

  • davidkresge1 Jan 3, 2008

    Families should sue the bus company.
    No way he should have been transporting passengers.

  • DontLikeTheSocialistObama Jan 3, 2008

    "What has his speeding tickets over 5 years ago got to do with anything? It obviously didn't bother the bus company he drove for so get over it, media! A prime example of sensationalism."

    This shows that Greyhound isn't concerned about passenger safety when they hire drives who have a history of speeding.

    This is another reason not to use Buses and other forms of mass transit. In a car, you control your fate. In a bus, you're at the mercy of the driver of the bus.

  • Mr. Keeping It Real Jan 3, 2008

    What has his speeding tickets over 5 years ago got to do with anything? It obviously didn't bother the bus company he drove for so get over it, media! A prime example of sensationalism.

  • HadEnough Jan 3, 2008

    WRAL has got a clue as to what news is. Get this story off here.
    Let's move on.

  • Doctor Dataclerk Jan 3, 2008

    Who hasn't been "convicted" of speeding? More lawyer ammunition.