The crash happened at mile marker 10 at 11:36 a.m. The bus, which was carrying 30 tourists, slammed into a guard rail and rolled onto its side near a highway rest stop about 7 miles from the park entrance. The driver of the bus was injured but able to communicate.The Utah Highway Patrol tweeted that between 12 and 15 people had suffered “very critical injuries” and that the tourists on the bus were “Chinese-speaking.” Another 10 people suffered “minor to serious” injuries. Multiple air ambulances and rescue teams arrived. Route 12 was closed in both directions between U.S. 89 and state Route 63.
The Chinese Embassy initiated emergency protocols to assist victims. Garfield County Sheriff Danny Perkins said tour buses traveling through the area are very common, and first responders have trained for such an incident. The cause of the crash was under investigation, but weather did not appear to be a factor. Bryce Canyon has the world’s largest concentration of irregular columns of rock. The red, orange, and white colors of the rocks provide spectacular views for park visitors. It receives at least two million visitors yearly.