Very early Saturday morning, a double-decker Megabus lost on its way to the bus station crashed into a low railroad overpass (pictured) outside of Syracuse, NY. Four passengers were killed, and twenty people injured, including the driver. Now, the public has learned that the driver was looking at his personal GPS unit at the time of the accident–which Megabus drivers are not permitted to use while driving for work.
The clearance is just ten feet, nine inches, and while this bus isn’t the first tall vehicle to hit this overpass, it’s the first known fatality. The passengers killed were sitting toward the front of the top level of the bus. Authorities are now waiting for blood tests on the Megabus driver and an accident reconstruction before deciding whether to press charges against the driver.
I grew up near where this accident happened, and know the area. It’s hard to believe that the bus driver wouldn’t have known about the low bridge. The warnings about the low clearance are numerous, prominent (flashing lights!), and start a few miles back.
Megabus driver was checking his own GPS device when fatal Onondaga Lake Parkway crash occurred [Post-Standard]
Salina railroad bridge is often struck despite warning signs, flashing lights [Post-Standard]
Onondaga County DA William Fitzpatrick said decision on whether to charge driver in bridge/bus crash may take week or more [Post-Standard]