A brief history of the worst U.S. traffic crashes

The chilling headlines in St. Louis news media a few days ago spelled out a disaster that was almost unbelievable. But the news from the small town of Schoharie, New York, was real: 20 people died in the crash of a stretch limousine.

All 18 people inside the vehicle were killed, as were two pedestrians in what is one of the deadliest motor vehicle crashes in U.S. history.

Law enforcement officials said the limo failed to stop at an intersection in the small New York town. It then slammed into a parked SUV.

USA Today recently ran an article giving a brief overview of other highway crashes that likewise claimed 20 lives or more.

  • The deadliest of all traffic crashes in the U.S. was on Sept. 17, 1963. That’s when a bus carrying migrant workers was hit by a freight train outside of a small town in northern California. Thirty-two workers died in the horrific tragedy.
  • In May of 1976, a bus carrying a high school choir plunged off of a freeway ramp – also in northern California. A teacher and 28 students died in the crash.
  • Another school bus accident – this time involving high school and elementary school kids – took 27 lives in February 1958. The vehicle went off the road and into a river, where it went downstream and submerged. Twenty-one students survived.
  • Back in June of 1980, a tour bus on its way to Branson, Missouri, plunged into an Arkansas ravine. Twenty people were killed and another 13 were injured.

If you or a loved one is harmed by a negligent driver, contact a St. Louis attorney experienced in personal injury and wrongful death litigation.