Good Samaritan recounts scene of deadly crash

Local News

GARFIELD COUNTY, Utah (CNN) — A Utah business owner was one of the first people on the scene of a deadly bus crash early Friday morning. The bus, which was carrying Chinese tourists, ran off the road and rolled into a guardrail near Bryce Canyon National Park.

The business owner tried to help everyone he could, despite the language barrier and he says he’s still haunted by what he saw.

“Sounded like a warzone, big explosion,” Robert Driedonks said. “I saw the bus, and went oh no.”

He rushed down the highway from his business and came upon people and belongings, scattered across the highway

“I just went to the people who was worst,” Driedonks said. “The people still laying by the side of the bus, I think bus rolled on them.”

The first three people he checked on were dead.

They were all women, Driedonks says. He found one of the husbands, who didn’t speak English. They couldn’t talk to each other. So, they just sat there and hugged.

“He kept holding his wife’s head and hugging her,” Driedonks said. “He was just looking for his glasses and I just tried to hold him and he was doing a prayer and I tried to hold him.”

Driedonks says he pulled someone off the bus and looked around at who else needed help

“I said are you okay? He said: ‘Yeah, that’s my father,’ and his father was next to him and was hurt pretty bad.”

He says everyone began to go into shock. Some stayed silent, others let out cries.

“I was scared, and emotional,” Driedonks said. “So, I just kind of pray for their lives and their families.”

No matter the language, the prayer is the same.

“I don’t care what country you’re from, we’re all human beings,” Driedonks said. “I don’t think nobody in life should go through something like that.”

Four people were killed in the crash. Between 12 and 15 passengers suffered “very critical injuries.” Ten others had injuries described as ranging from minor to serious.

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