FDNY crews were able to tow an articulated MTA bus back from an overhead bulkhead after the vehicle veered off the Bronx and was left dangling over the Cross Bronx Expressway for hours early in the morning.
Eight persons were injured in the terrible accident, which occurred at around 11:10 p.m.
The 55-year-old driver was trying to turn left from University Street onto a ramp to the Washington Bridge when the Bx35 suddenly exited off the road.
The driver went across the bus to check on the seven passengers, who were all later rescued and taken to hospital.
All were expected to survive, even though one passenger was more seriously injured than the others.
The articulated bus consists of two sections, with an accordion section connected by cables. When the bus left the road, it was suspended by cables connecting the two sections, suspending the front section in the air.
Several large cranes have been deployed to lift the bus off the highway. After more than five hours, FDNY crews were able to lift and pull her off the bridge before 6:30 AM.
It was withdrawn to the MTA arena for further investigation.
The bus has a black box that helps the MTA to determine what happened, as well as cameras and passenger counters that collect information.
Patrick Warren, Air Transport Authority Chief Safety and Security Officer, issued the following statement:
The goal of the MTA is to have the safest transportation system in the country, and when an accident like this happens, we take it very seriously. We are conducting a full investigation and will implement lessons learned in order to prevent it from happening again. We are sure this was a terrible accident for those customers on the bus. Our hearts are with them with the hope that they can recover quickly.
The driver is a veteran of 12 years. Police investigate mechanical or driver fault as possible causes.
The Bx35 bus was heading to 178th Street and Broadway in Washington Heights at the time of the accident.