Concrete truck driver admits to using cocaine before accident with school bus that killed 5-year-old and adult

The driver of a concrete truck admitted that he had smoked marijuana and taken cocaine before a horrible accident in Texas that took the life of a child and an adult.

The accident unfolded on March 22 when a bus of pre-kindergarten children from Tom Green Elementary were returning from a field trip to the Capital of Texas Zoo in Bastrop County just outside of Austin.

Security video from the school bus showed the moment the truck veered into oncoming traffic on State Highway 21, hitting the school bus and causing it to roll onto its side.

The 5-year-old child who died as a result of the crash was identified as Ulises Rodriguez Montoya while the 33-year-old who died was identified as Ryan Wallace.

Officials said a total of 53 people were harmed in the crash, but they did not elaborate on the conditions of each person.

The driver of the concrete truck, 42-year-old Jerry Hernandez, told investigators that he had swerved in order to avoid a car in front of him who had reportedly hit their brakes quickly. Officials determined that he could have swerved the other direction rather than drive into traffic.

On Friday, Hernandez was arrested on a warrant for criminally negligent homicide, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety. He also had an unrelated warrant for a bond violation.

The arrest affidavit said that Hernandez admitted to smoking marijuana the night before the accident at about 10 p.m. and that he ingested cocaine at about 1 a.m. that morning. He also allegedly told police that he had only slept for three hours before the crash.

Seatbelt acceleration

The district said that the school bus involved in the crash did not have seatbelts. Hays CISD Superintendent Dr. Eric Wright said the district was moving to equip every bus with seatbelts more quickly than previously scheduled.

“We are supposed to get our next round of buses in 3-4 weeks that all are equipped with seat belts that will make it where our entire fleet of route buses all have seat belts,” Wright told KXAN.

“Then we’re going to accelerate with our Facilities and Bond Oversight Committee with the blessing of our School Board, to go out to replace our spare buses with buses that all have seat belts,” he added.

The school district also praised the driver of the school bus, saying that she swerved in such a way that likely saved a lot of lives.

A GoFundMe has been set up to help pay for the funeral costs for Ulises.

Here’s the video of the incident:

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