Three Oilfield Employees Killed After Rear-Ending Three Rivers School Bus

Three oilfield workers were killed Thursday morning after their vehicle rear-ended a Three Rivers Independent School District bus on Highway 72, about three to four miles west of Three Rivers.

The accident happened at 6:48 a.m. as the workers were traveling eastbound on Highway 72 in a passenger van. Seven workers in all were riding in the van after completing an overnight shift. They collided with the back of the Three Rivers ISD school bus as it was pulling into an RV park to pick up a student.

The impact forced the van to roll over, causing significant damage. According to Department of Public Safety Cpl. Charlie Ramirez, there were no skid marks at the scene, leading troopers to believe that the driver of the van never hit the brakes and that fatigue may have been in issue.

Three of the oilfield workers, including the driver of the van, were dead on arrival. They were identified as Daniel Zambrano, 26, of Kilgore, Tx; Jose Rios, 41, of San Antonio; and Martin Aguirre, 43, of Brownsville.

The four remaining passengers of the van were rushed to the hospital. One was transported to Christus Spohn Memorial Hospital via HALO Flight. Another was taken by ground to South Texas Regional in Jourdanton, and the other two were taken by ground to Christus Spohn Beeville.

Ramirez said none of the passengers appeared to be wearing their seat belts.

There were 12 students on the school bus at the time of the accident, but thankfully, there were only some minor injuries. Some were transported from the scene by private vehicles, while others were taken by their parents. None of the students needed to be transported by ambulance. The driver of the bus was okay.


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