At least 20 commuters were injured on Monday after a transit bus carrying commuters from New Jersey was tail-ended by a Martz Trailways bus at the entrance of Lincoln Tunnel.
The accident, which occurred in the morning rush hour, resulted in Lincoln Tunnel being closed until after 10.30 am, causing serious delays and leaving thousands of commuters stranded. According to some commuters, the usual two hour commute ended up taking more than five hours due to the delays.
At least 20 commuters were transported to hospitals in the area where they were treated for minor injuries. According to Michael Jordan, Martz Trailways corporate director of safety, none of the injured sustained were life threatening, and most of the commuters have already been released from hospital. ‘We are very grateful for that,’ said Jordan.
The Martz Trailways bus involved the accident was en route to New York City from Tobyhanna. According to Jordan, the bus departed from Tobyhanna at 5.15am and picked up passengers in Mount Pocono around 20 minutes later. The 55 seater bus was carrying approximately 30 passengers at the time of the incident, which occurred at approximately 7.15am in the express bus lane of New Jersey Route 495, as it entered the Lincoln Tunnel.
Both buses involved in the accident were unable to continue operations following the incident, and had to be towed from the scene for repairs. According to the Jersey Journal, two passengers were seriously injured, and a further three were removed from the scene on stretchers but were later cleared of any serious injuries. The driver of the Martz Trailways bus was among the injured.
Jordan did not comment further on the circumstances surrounding the incident, and local police authorities and transport officials are currently conducting a thorough investigation into the accident, in collaboration with Jordan and other personnel from Martz Trailways.
Martz Trailways runs scores of buses from the Poconos into New York City each day. The last report of an accident involving a Martz Trailways bus was in March 2011, when a pedestrian was killed after a Martz Bus crashed into a stationary vehicle, pushing the vehicle into a bystander.
A second accident at the Lincoln Tunnel on Monday afternoon further delayed traffic. According to the Port Authority of New York, eight vehicles piled up in an accident in the outbound tube of the Lincoln Tunnel at around 12.30pm on Monday, causing the outbound north tube to be closed for several hours.