COMMACK - A party bus driver has been fired after he was caught on camera texting while driving a bus full of dozens of passengers.
In the video posted on Facebook, the party bus driver from M&V Limousine in Commack is seen texting for 23 seconds while the bus is in motion. At some points, the driver uses both hands to type.
The video was posted online by a woman who was among the 45 people aboard the bus during the July 19 incident. The 24-year-old passenger says the bus had been rented for a day in the Hamptons, and says a friend made the recording.
The incident happened one day after the limo crash in Cutchogue that killed four young women. The woman who posted the video online says she knew one of the victims in that crash, adding, "It really just hit so close to home, and after the accident, I knew I had to say something."
The president and CEO of M&V Limousine, Mark Vigliante, says he only found out about the incident yesterday. Vigliante says the 42-year-old driver was fired immediately.
"He just said, 'I looked at my phone for a brief minute to see it if I had any messages and put the phone right back down,'" Vigliante says. "I said, 'Yeah, but you know, you can't be doing that.'"
"We have zero tolerance for any kind of distracted driving or texting and driving," Vigliante adds. He says his company is now considering adding cameras to monitor drivers.
The driver works as a school bus driver during the school year, News 12 is told.
Officials say that about 3,000 people across the U.S. die each year due to accidents involving texting and driving.