DeKalb County

Family of 11 stuck in Georgia after their party bus flips on I-85 in hit-and-run

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — A family who survived a hit-and-run bus crash is pleading for the driver who crashed into them to come forward. Dekalb County Police Department is investigating the case as a hit-and-run.

It happened Sept. 21 around 11 p.m. on Interstate 85 South just before the Chamblee-Tucker Rd. exit.

Rekiya Barringer said she was driving a party bus with 10 of her family members inside on a road trip from Charlotte to Texas to attend her daughter’s college graduation ceremony.

The trip took a traumatic turn when a car hydroplaned into the back passenger side of the bus.

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“Every time I close my eyes, I just vision the bus flipping over and over and over,” said Barringer.

Barringer is a former truck driver with a commercial driver’s license and owns the bus.

“I was pinned in the cabin,” said Barringer. “Some bystanders busted glass to get me out. I was dangling by my seatbelt.”

Strangers stopped to pull others out. The driver who hit them ditched the car and ran off on foot.

“I wouldn’t have the conscience to leave a scene like that,” said Barringer.

The oldest survivor on the bus is 70. The youngest is 18.

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The family is still stuck in Georgia nearly one week later because a 22-year-old is still in the hospital. She has had two surgeries since the crash. She expects to have more when she is able to return home.

“They came to Georgia one way and are going to leave another way,” said Tina Barringer.

The family has visited the crash site between hospital visits.

“You can see the guardrail where it’s bent,” said Tina Barringer.

“I was glad we were all able to be rolled away, no funeral arrangements,” said Rekiya Barringer.

The family said police noted the other driver’s license plate and VIN. However, no arrests have been made.

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