Crown says Diallo didn't brake or have control of bus during closing arguments at Westboro bus crash trial
OTTAWA -- During closing arguments at the Westboro bus crash trial Tuesday, the Crown said driver Aissatou Diallo was speeding, didn't have control of the bus and wasn't paying attention when it crashed in January 2019.
Crown attorney Dallas Mack telling the judge Diallo, who was behind the wheel, "operated that bus, in short, in a markedly different manner than a multitude of other operators that navigated Westboro Station that day and she failed to react in any meaningful way once the danger was perceived by her when she exclaimed 'Oh, my God.'"
"No brakes are applied, no evasive steering is done," Mack said. "Instead what happens is she applies the throttle for two seconds while off-road."
Judy Booth, Bruce Thomlinson and Anja Van Beek were killed in the crash. Diallo has pleaded not guilty to three counts of dangerous driving causing death and 35 counts of dangerous driving causing bodily harm.
Court heard there was no medical emergency and nothing was mechanically wrong with the bus. The defence said sun glare was a big factor.
On Monday, the Crown showed videos from Diallo's bus that day. They say it shows the sun was shining throughout her route and that Diallo was able to navigate around a truck that had been parked in a bus lane and stop for a red light despite the sun making it hard to see what colour it was.
"If it really is as blinding for her…driving at 67 km/h into a 50 zone approaching Westboro station is dangerous," Mack said.
The defence argued Diallo's training wasn't adequate and that lines from previous construction were confusing.
Mack told the judge "the notion that she sees this construction line and is veering right is inconsistent with where she actually ends up…her movement to the right starts well before that line."
Questions were also raised about whether Diallo was distracted before the crash. The Crown alleges grainy footage shows Diallo pulling a headphone out of her ear after the crash with the phone in her hand as she rushes to the top floor.
As for whether it contributed to the crash, Mack said "…this may be an explanation, an explanation that Mr. Lamoureux, the defence expert even agrees that wearing an earbud would be a distraction and is contrary to OC Transpo policy."
Diallo did not testify at trial. Her lawyers will present their closing arguments on Wednesday.