An allegedly stolen box truck collided with a city bus at a Manhattan intersection early Wednesday morning, which caused both vehicles to land on the sidewalk and crash into scaffolding. Police received a 911 call at about 5:30 a.m. Wednesday reporting a stolen delivery truck. Just moments later, the delivery truck was traveling south on Seventh Avenue when it hit the bus driving east on 14th Street. Upon impact, both vehicles crashed into scaffolding surrounding a twelve-story commercial building. Authorities reported that the city bus driver, forty-nine-year-old Hillside, New Jersey resident William Pena, was killed and at least four others were injured.
Metropolitan Transportation Authority spokesman Kevin Ortiz stated that among the injured were a bus passenger and two individuals on the street, including a coffee cart vendor. According to reports, these individuals were all hospitalized. Charges are pending against the driver of the allegedly stolen truck, a twenty-two-year-old who is at Bellevue Hospital being treated for injuries sustained in the crash. Before crashing into the bus, the truck struck a person riding a scooter, who police say was also injured and transported to a local hospital.
The MTA reported that Pena was the first city bus driver to die in a motor vehicle crash in more than fourteen years. MTA Chairman Thomas Prendergast stated, “Our thoughts and prayers are with Mr. Pena’s family, and we are working closely with law enforcement to ensure the perpetrator of this crime is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.” A witness who was standing on the same block but facing the opposite direction stated that when he heard the crash, it sounded like the scraping noise made by a snowplow. When Craig Ydolly spun around, he saw the scaffolding falling down on the truck and city bus and he also observed an injured individual on the ground. Ydolly stated that the bus was leaking gas. Jose Cherrez, the superintendent of a building just one block from the accident scene, stated that “it sounded like an explosion. I heard the ambulances about 10 minutes later.” Following the fatal crash, Seventh Avenue between 13th and 15th streets and West 14th Street between Sixth and Eighth Avenues were closed. Bus service was rerouted around the scene; subway service was not affected by the crash.
1 dead, at least 4 injured in NYC bus-truck crash www.palmbeachpost.com February 12, 2013
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