Authorities Continue Investigation Into Fatal Bus Accident

October 10, 2004--Posted at 8:00 p.m. CDT

WEST MEMPHIS--Rain soaked debris scatters the site of a deadly bus accident claiming the lives of 14 people. The biggest question is left unanswered......

"Something this catastrophic is very hard to determine if all you have is damage to the vehicle,"said Gary Van Etten, from the National Transportation and Safety Board.

Authorities are investigating what caused a tour bus to run off the road at the Interstate 55 and Highway 63 interchange early Saturday morning.

Several different agencies are investigating the crash site looking for any clues leading them to what caused this fatal accident.

An accident reconstructionist will also be assisting investigators.

The accident reconstructionist  will investigate every aspect of the accident, then provide a report to the NTSB.

A team from the National Transportation and Safety Board will be broken down into six specialty groups.

Each group will focus on one aspect of the accident ranging from the conditions of the road, to the history of the bus company.

"We're looking very closely at crash worthiness because it was on interstate movement.  We're interested in that there's a number of factors,"said Van Etten.

Officials said they are confident the investigation will lead them to the cause of the accident.