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Bus Wreck Claims Third Elderly Victim

Thu., June 29, 1995

Deaths from a bus wreck near Virginia City rose to three on Wednesday, and examination of state records showed the bus driver was inadequately licensed.

Madison County Sheriff Lee Edmisten said the bus that crashed Tuesday while returning nursing home residents to Butte was traveling at 65 mph, 10 mph over the limit on Route 287.

“We know that speed was a factor,” he said.

Two elderly women injured in the crash died Tuesday, and another on Wednesday. They were among 15 Crest Nursing Home residents returning from a picnic. The bus carried 21 people altogether, and only the driver escaped injury.

The Montana Highway Patrol identified him as Christopher Dziak, 25, of Butte.

Records at the state Driver Services Bureau show Dziak has a standard driver license. The law requires that a person operating a bus carrying 16 people or more have a commercial license with a bus endorsement, according to Drew Livesay, operations manager for the state Motor Carrier Services Division.

State records also show Dziak was twice convicted of speeding last year, once for driving 57 mph in a 45 mph zone, and the other time for driving 45 mph when the limit was 25 mph.

Tags: Accident

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