One of Philadelphia’s SEPTA (Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority) buses was involved in a serious accident last week when a passenger car ran a red light and crashed into the vehicle.
According to initial reports, the bus was travelling near the intersection of 11th Street and Vine Street, a busy intersection, when a White Mazda driven by a 25-year old woman sped through a red traffic signal on the Vine Street Expressay and slammed into the bus, which was driving north on 11th.
The force of the collision threw the 57-year old bus driver from his seat and possibly caused him to experience a seizure or some other medical condition. With no driver, the bus careened out of control, striking three vehicles that were parked on the street and knocking a street light 75 feet down the street. The episode ended when one of the bus’ passengers jumped out of their seat, took over the wheel of the vehicle, and pulled the bus over to safety.
Alphonso Blackwell, one of 30 riding the bus at the time, said “A lot of older people that was in the front that were standing up that got hurt too. They fell.”
According to another one of the passengers, “It slammed into the wall and kept going. Some lady had to jump out of her seat and go and stop the bus because he was out of it after that. The lady that was driving this white car, she was in the wrong all the way.”
According to a spokesperson from SEPTA, there were almost two dozen non-life threatening injuries to passengers as a result of the accident. Twenty of them were to passengers, who were taken to various nearby hospitals. The two passengers in the striking vehicle also required medical attention. The bus driver was taken to Hahnemann University Hospital for treatment of his injuries.
Though the passengers onboard suffered bumps and bruises, they expressed gratitude for the fact that the accident was worse, and indicated that it was amazing that nobody had died as a result of the incident. “It was scary as hell. It was really scary. Your life really does flash before your eyes. I’m just happy nobody died.”
The woman who caused the accident had to be removed from her vehicle via the jaws of life. She and her 29-year old female passenger were also taken to Hahnemann University Hospital.