Police in Maebashi, Gunma Prefecture, on Sunday sent a 66-year-old man to prosecutors following a minibus accident on Friday.
Police said that Isao Ebihara, who was the minibus driver, has been charged with negligent driving resulting in injury and driving without a valid license, Fuji TV reported.
The accident occurred at around 2:50 p.m. Friday. The bus, carrying 18 tourists aged over 50 who came to climb Mt Eboshidake, started moving while Ebihara was outside the bus. He had parked the bus in a lot at the trail entrance in the village of Nanmoku, Kyodo News reported. The bus went off the road and rolled about 20 meters down a mountain slope, injuring 14 passengers.
Police said Sunday that Ebihara has admitted he may have forgotten to make sure the parking brake was fully engaged. He also said he did not have a license to drive a bus.
Police raided the bus company’s head office on Saturday and said the bus operator faces a charge of violation of the Road Transportation Law for using drivers without valid licenses.© Japan Today/Kyodo