NTSB finds no mechanical cause in fatal bus crash, police find sixth victim's next-of-kin
BALTIMORE (WBFF) -- National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigators have completed the mechanical inspections of both buses involved in Tuesday's fatal crash and say no mechanical defects or deficiencies were noted.
Additional data is still being analyzed as the investigation continues -- and additional roadway measurements were taken Friday, at the scene.
The NTSB said a preliminary report may be issued within two to three weeks.
The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) is now working to repair and recover the hard drives from its transit bus, in order to gain access to any video footage that may have been captured, an NTSB official noted at a Friday briefing, held with the Baltimore Police Department (BPD). According to the NTSB, investigators have now recovered four surveillance videos that capture the school bus's approach towards its first collision, with a Ford Mustang.
None of the videos captured the actual collision, only moments prior to the collision, officials said. Though police could not comment on what speed the school bus was going, investigators said it did appear the vehicle was traveling above the speed limit.
The crash killed six people -- five of which were identified on Wednesday.
At the Friday briefing, Baltimore Police identified the sixth victim as 46-year-old Pattie Lynn Martinez, after efforts to find family members were unsuccessful.
Investigators described the woman as "homeless," with a last known address on South Bond Street, near Bank Street.
Approximately one hour after the briefing a citizen called police and next-of-kin was identified.
Police also announced a change to the total number of victims, previously thought to be 16. A 17th victim, a 29-year-old woman, remains in an area hospital and is listed in stable condition.
Only one other injured victim has yet to be discharged from a hospital. Police identified him as a 28-year-old man in critical condition.
Investigators have also determined that a pillar near Loudon Park Cemetery was not struck by the bus during the chain of events, as previously believed, but had existing damage.
"We know people want answers," BPD Chief Spokesperson T.J. Smith said Friday. "We're doing everything we can as fast as we can but with the respect that's due in this investigation, to make sure we get accurate information and accurate answers to disseminate to the public."
It took police just four minutes to respond to the scene after the initial call, Smith noted.
The crash happened around 6:30 a.m. in southwest Baltimore on Nov 1.