Accused in traffic accident in Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Area to stand trial

The 4th Department of the Investigative Committee's Directorate (located in the city of Yekaterinburg) has finished criminal investigation into a traffic accident in Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Area involving a bus with children on board. Director of the Sibiryak Sports School Irina Tarasova is accused of negligence, leading to death of two or more persons under Part 3 of Article 293, the bus driver Marat Zainullin and representative of an entrepreneur, who provided transportation, Alexander Sidoruk are accused oа providing services that do not meet safety requirements, leading to death of two or more persons under Part 3 of Article 238, as well as truck driver Rail Saitkhanov is accused of violation traffic rules and rules for operations of vehicles under Part 5 of Article 264 of the RF Penal Code.

According to investigators, on 4 December 2016, children and coaches of Sibiryak Sports School, 33 people in all, left the city of Khanty-Mansiysk for the town of Nefteyugansk on a Karosa C934. 135 bus driven by Zainullin. On kilometer marker 926 on Highway R-404 Tyumen – Tobolsk – Khanty-Mansiysk, the bus collided with a VOLVO FH 12 420 heavy hauler driven by Rail Saitkhanov who had drifted into the other lane. The collision swerved the bus into the wrong side of the road where it hit a Scania 113 heavy hauler.

12 passengers of the bus were killed in the accident, including 10 children. 19 people, with 16 children among them were injured, while 2 more children suffered minor injuries. All the bus passengers were recognized as victims.

The investigators have revealed that in accordance with the current legislation the traffic police must escort a bus carrying a group of 3 or more children. Neither Tarasova nor anybody else on her instructions had notified the traffic police department about the children’s field trip. The traffic police had had no reasons to close Highway R-404 Tyumen – Tobolsk – Khanty-Mansiysk. According to the results of forensic inquiries and other materials of the case, the weather conditions on the day of the accident were fine with about 500-meter visibility. The road was in good condition and de-iced prior to the accident. No safety breaches during repair and maintenance of the road were detected. Results of the forensic motor technical inquiry confirm that the Scania 113 driver could not avoid the collision in any way, therefore cannot be charged with the crime.

The investigators also checked if the officials of road service, the service that authorized the transition of heavy haulers and staff of AO Bashneftegeofizika, the owner of the cargo did their duties. They gave legal assessment to the actions of those who had organized the competition and the transportation of the children, namely, representatives of the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Area-Yugra Sports Department, the Nefteyugansk town administration’s sports committee and staff of the regional traffic police department.

In addition, the investigators took steps to eliminate contributing factors of the crime. They found that Rail Saikhanov’s driving license had been revoked in June 2016, but the information on that was put into the traffic police database only in December. The Bashkortostan Office of the Investigative Committee ran a check and opened a probe in negligence under Part 3 of Article 293 of the RF Penal Code. An internal check carried out at the Bashkortostan Police Department confirmed grave violation of law by officials of the Ufa traffic police force: the chief of the force and its chief inspector were disciplined.

Proposals were made regarding improving the current legislation in the field of organized transportation of children.

The investigators have enough evidence, so the criminal case with the approved indictment has been referred to court.

Official spokesperson for the RF Investigative Committee                                                                       S.L. Petrenko