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2 Killed, 40 Hurt in Bus Crash Involving La. Flood Workers

Driver was in the country illegally
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 29, 2016 12:21 AM CDT

(Newser) – Fire District Chief Spencer Chauvin was among two people killed in a horrific crash in St. John the Baptist Parish, La., early Sunday. Police say a bus full of volunteers on the way to help with flood relief slammed into Chauvin and two other firefighters while they were at the scene of an earlier accident, Reuters reports. The firefighters were thrown over a guardrail, falling more than 30 feet into water, police say. At least 40 people were taken to local hospitals, including 24 bus passengers with mild to moderate injuries. The bus driver, Denis Yasmir Amaya Rodriguez, was arrested and police say he is a Honduran national who was in the country illegally and was driving without a license, NBC News reports.

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Rodriguez is expected to face charges including negligent homicide and reckless operation, police say. Colleagues describe Chauvin, a 36-year-old father of two, as a dedicated officer and devoted family man. "Today, our community lost one of the bravest souls, a model citizen and one of its most dedicated servants," colleague Adam Tamplain posted on Facebook, per the Advocate. "In my 10 years in the department, I had the honor of serving alongside and under Spencer. ... Rest easy brother, we'll take it from here." (Read more Louisiana stories.)

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