GSP: Bus headed to Masters flips on highway; Driver charged with DUI

Steven Hoppenbrouwer/Columbia County Detention Center

UPDATE (2:20 P.M.)

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- A Georgia state trooper says passengers riding a charter bus to the Masters golf tournament told investigators the driver veered off the roadway twice before he swerved a third time and caused the bus to overturn, injuring 15 people.

Sgt. Chris Wright of the Georgia State Patrol told The Associated Press one passenger told troopers he had decided before the crash: "I'm not riding back with him. I'll call an Uber."

The bus was taking 18 passengers from Atlanta to the tournament in Augusta when it crashed Thursday morning on Interstate 20. Wright said some passengers suffered broken bones and head injuries.

The driver, 61-year-old Steven F. Hoppenbrouwer, has been charged with driving under the influence. Wright said authorities believe he had been using drugs, not alcohol

11:50 A.M

COLUMBIA COUNTY, Ga. - A Gwinnett County bus driver is charged with DUI after flipping a charter bus on Interstate 20 Thursday morning. He was taking the passengers to the Masters Tournament in Augusta.

Fox 5 in Atlanta says, according to Georgia State Patrol, the wreck happened around 8:45 a.m. on I-20 in Columbia County. Investigators said the bus driver, Steven Hoppenbrouwer, ran off the side of the road, overcorrected back to the left, then the bus overturned on the median.

Authorities said 18 passengers were on the bus. Several were taken to a local hospital in Augusta to be treated for non-life threatening injuries.

Hoppenbrouwer, 61, was charged with DUI and failure to maintain lane. The bus he was driving is owned by Executive Limousine, Inc.

The GSP said troopers on the scene were told by passengers the bus was headed to the Masters Tournament, which began Thursday morning.

I-20 remains shut down in both directions.

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