Bus en route to Los Angeles breaks down near I-10 - FOX 35 News Orlando

Passengers on road after bus breakdown leaves them stranded for hours

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PHOENIX (KSAZ) - The Phoenix heat was not a welcoming site for a bus load of people traveling from Texas to California.  Their bus broke down overnight and they stopped in Phoenix, waiting nine hours for another ride.

A group of passengers stood outside a gas station off Interstate 10 and 59th Avenue most of the morning Tuesday as their bus, according to the driver, was unable to make it to their destination in Los Angeles.

"When we got here, they told us it would be 20 minutes," said Wendy Guzman.

That 20 minute wait, which started at 2:30 a.m., turned into a nine hour nightmare as some describe it.  As the sun rose, the heat quickly became too much.

More than 50 people boarded the bus in El Paso.  They hit the road around 6:30 p.m. Monday.

"We noticed that it was pretty hot on the bus, so we asked the driver to raise the air.  He said it's already at its highest," said Marisol Tiscareno.

The bus made a scheduled stop in Phoenix to change drivers -- already two hours late because of mechanical problems.  The decision was made to stay.

As the wait for a new ride wore on, the temperatures continued to rise and passengers sought shade under an awning.

At the gas station, the drivers used a garden hose to run the air conditioning and keep the passengers from overheating.

"I would go on the bus because it's kind of fresh," said David Martinez.

Relief arrived at 9:20 a.m.  The group was eager to leave, asking why this happened in the first place.

"If they knew there was a problem since we left El Paso, why didn't they just get another bus or refund our money?" said a passenger.

A manager for the bus company says passengers were given free breakfast and a relief bus was sent out as soon as the driver called for one.

The company would not, however, discuss maintenance records.

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