Bus involved in fatal Knoxville crash was carrying Indiana church members

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WISH) – A bus carrying church members from Brazil, Indiana was involved in a deadly crash in Knoxville, Tennessee on Thursday night.

According to the Knoxville Police Department, the bus was heading eastbound when the brakes failed. It ran a red light, crashing into a Kia heading southbound.

The bus then continued along, hitting a truck. It crashed into a CVS sign and came to a rest in the store’s parking lot, police said.

According to police, the Kia crashed into a truck after the bus hit it. The driver of the Kia was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police said the driver had latched the seat belt to keep the seat belt alarm from going off. The driver was found sitting on top of the seatbelt after the crash.

Officials believe if the driver had been wearing a seatbelt, it would have made a difference because the damage to the car was contained to the passenger side of the car.

The passenger in the truck was hospitalized with possible serious injuries. That person was not wearing a seatbelt either, according to police.

The bus had 18 people on it at the time of the crash, including the driver, who has been identified as James Williams, 40, of Brazil.

Police said Williams was taken to a local hospital for a blood draw, which is required by state law for a fatal crash.  He was not injured in the crash.

Three adults on the bus were taken to the hospital with minor injuries and two kids were also hospitalized with minor injuries.

According to police, the bus is from the Berea Christian Church in Brazil. Church members were in Knoxville for a mission trip.

No charges have been filed in the crash as of Thursday.

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