The Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs. Photo via Wikimedia Commons
The Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs. Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Crying relatives of some bus-crash victims milled outside a Palm Springs hospital emergency room, hours after 13 people died on a freeway six miles away in the pre-dawn darkness.

Five patients remained in critical condition at the facility, and some were still in surgery late Sunday,  said Dr. Ricard Townsend, a surgeon at Desert Regional Medical Center.

“The nature of the injuries suggests that something unusual happened, mostly injuries to the face and several broken bones,” he told City News Service outside the hospital.

“They are not the typical type of injuries seen in car accident, because of the way the bus accordioned into the back of the truck,” Townsend said.

“There was a major transfer of kinetic energy,” the surgeon said, as th ebus hit the back of the truck.

Patients were still in surgery at mid-afternoon, the doctor told CNS.

There were about 15 people in the waiting room at Desert Regional Medical Center by late afternoon. One woman in a wheelchair had apparent injuries, possibly from the crash.

Men, women and children stood or sat. Some spoke in Spanish, some were crying.

About 20 patients with serious or citical injuries had been taken to Desert Regional following the predawn crash, on Interstate 10 just west of Indian Avenue.

A fleet of ambulances from as far away as Riverside ferried the injured to the Palm Springs hospital, as well as Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage and JFK Memorial Hospital in Indio.

— City News Service


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