M103 Service Alert Details

Earlier this morning, I posted an entry about a M103 service alert which led to the detours which are still in place as I write this entry. The incident referred to in the service alert was the result of a dump truck hitting a Fung Wah bus. Sewell Chan of the New York Times City Room Blog posted this report:

A commercial dump truck rammed into a bus in Chinatown on Monday morning, sending it onto the sidewalk and crashing into the front of a bank, killing a 57-year-old woman and injuring four others, including two police officers, officials said.

The fatally injured woman, who authorities said was struck by debris that fell from a sign as she was trying to cross the street, was pronounced dead at the scene. She was later identified as Lai Ho, of Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. The authorities said she might have died of a heart attack after being hit by the debris.

Three people who were inside the bus — a driver and two passengers — were taken to Bellevue Hospital Center. A fourth person inside the bus was taken to New York Downtown Hospital in stable condition.

The driver of the dump truck was reported to be in critical, but stable, condition. The driver — identified as Alejandro Fallo, 54 — was conscious and passed a Breathalyzer test administered at the scene, the authorities said.

“The only thing I can tell you is that it was a dump truck coming over the Manhattan Bridge, that somehow went out of control and struck a bus,” Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said this morning, who was speaking at a news conference at the Apollo Theater in Harlem, before a ceremony for police recruits. “The bus then struck a lamp post and a fire hydrant, and went into a bank. A woman that was struck is in very serious condition. I’m not certain if it’s a fatality. A police car — a CRV van — was also struck. Two of our officers were injured as well.”

The van, known as a critical response vehicle or CRV, was on routine patrol as part of the Police Department’s counterterrorism initiatives, the authorities said. The two officers in the van were treated at the scene for minor injuries.

The dump truck was operated of CPQ Freight System, based in East Rutherford, N.J., traveled from the Manhattan Bridge, clipped three vans as it went along, then — at the northeast corner of Bowery and Canal — crashed into a Fung Wah bus parked in front of 147 Canal Street. The bus, part of a company that operates intercity bus lines, had its cargo doors open. Passengers were waiting outside to board the bus.

The force of the collision spun the front of the bus toward the right and into a storefront at 77 Bowery, where the United Commercial Bank is located. Several attempts to reach the bank’s representatives by phone were unsuccessful. The rear of the bus swung into the Bowery. A lamp post was also knocked down.

Jimmy Zocco, a painter who was sitting in a van when the accident, said: “A dump truck came flying off the bridge. He hit the back of the bus and dragged it into the street.” He said of the 20 or so people waiting to board the bus: “They scattered. They ran. They saw it coming.” The dump truck also knocked over a fire hydrant.

The Sanitation Department was not involved in the accident, but sent workers to help with cleaning up antifreeze, coolant and other liquids that were released by the vehicles during the collision, city officials said.

Al Baker, Dmitry Kiper and Colin Moynihan contributed reporting.

My condolences go out to the friends & family of Lai Ho who must deal with this awful tragedy.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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