Authorities: No NC criminal charges in fatal bus wreck

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina authorities won’t file criminal charges against the South Carolina church that owned a bus that crashed on a bridge, killing four people.

The state Highway Patrol said the driver of the bus lost control when a tire blew Sept. 17, causing the bus to hit the median guardrail and strike cement bridge support columns on U.S. Highway 74 near Hamlet.

The investigation released Wednesday says Sandy River Baptist Church in Chester, South Carolina, owned the bus. No one answered the church phone Wednesday, and it didn’t have voicemail.

The Highway Patrol filed four civil penalties against the church for non-wreck-related violations such as improper registration plates. A patrol spokesman says the fine for all four penalties is about $150.

Federal investigations haven’t been completed.

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