26 passengers injured when Toronto-to-NYC bus crashes near Syracuse

A bus heading from Toronto to New York City crashed into a wrecked car and a tractor-trailer on Interstate 81 outside Syracuse early Thursday, injuring more than two dozen people, authorities said.

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — A bus heading from Toronto to New York City crashed into a wrecked car and a tractor-trailer on Interstate 81 outside Syracuse early Thursday, injuring more than two dozen people, authorities said.

The Pine Hill Trailways bus with 52 passengers on board was travelling south on I-81 around 2:30 a.m. when it slammed into a car that had just crashed into a guard rail and came to rest in the highway’s left lane just south of Syracuse, the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office said.

Deputies said the bus then hit the rear a tractor-trailer whose driver had pulled over on the highway’s shoulder to offer assistance to the car’s driver.

Twenty-six of the passengers and the bus driver were injured, officials said.

It took emergency crews two hours to extricate the driver,Kelvin Sharpe Sr. of Buffalo, from the vehicle’s smashed-in front end, deputies said. He was in critical condition at a Syracuse hospital.

The injured passengers mostly suffered lower extremity, chest, back and facial injuries, all of them apparently minor, police said. They were transported to hospitals in the 10 ambulances and other emergency vehicles that responded to the crash scene.

Thirteen patients were treated at the Upstate University Hospital and 11 of them were released, a spokeswoman said in an email to The Canadian Press.

Onondaga County sheriff’s detective Jon Seeber told the Post-Standard that there was a language barrier between some of the passengers and rescue crews.

Police say the car driver, 36-year-old Robert Tarbell of Nedrow, has been charged with driving while intoxicated. He was being held in the Onondaga County Jail on $15,000 bail.

I-81’s southbound lanes were closed until shortly before 5:30 a.m.

Deputies said the bus left Toronto on Wednesday evening and was scheduled to arrive in New York City around 6:30 a.m. Thursday.

The uninjured passengers were taken to Syracuse’s bus station, where some boarded another bus for Manhattan, while others arranged their own transportation back home.

The bus is owned by Trailways of New York, a Hurley, N.Y.-based company that also operates Adirondack Trailways, New York Trailways and NeOn Bus.

The American Bus Association, a Washington, D.C.-based trade group that issued a statement on behalf of Pine Hill, said the company operates buses daily between Ontario and New York City.

Dan Ronan, an ABA spokesman, said the bus picked up passengers in Buffalo and Rochester. Company officials were still trying to determine where the injured passengers are from, he said.

Robert Johnson told Syracuse’s WSTM-TV that he boarded the bus in Rochester and was awake when the crash occurred, but many of the other passengers were sleeping at the time.

“All I heard was a boom and my head hit the seat; I mean mad noise, it was crazy,” Johnson said. “I never experienced that in my life and I’m still scared to death by it.”

Just Posted

Red Deer group looking to keep roads safe for cyclists

A Red Deer cycling group is concerned about road safety after multiple… Continue reading

Smoke and pets do not mix

Take care of your pets during the smoky weather

Former Red Deer lawyer sentenced

Charges included possession of stolen property

WATCH: Raising money for kids at the Gord Bamford Charity Golf Classic

Former NHL players, Olympians, pro rodeo circuit members and musicians teed off… Continue reading

Canadian soccer captain Christine Sinclair continues to lead fight against MS

TORONTO — Christine Sinclair continues to have an impact on and off… Continue reading

In Franklin’s anthems, women heard an empowering message

NEW YORK — Aretha Franklin never saw herself as a feminist heroine.… Continue reading

Happy birthday Boler: 100s of cute campers in Winnipeg for anniversary gathering

WINNIPEG — Angela Durand sits outside her camper which is decorated to… Continue reading

Merkel, Putin share a headache: Donald Trump

FRANKFURT — German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin will… Continue reading

Tim Hortons says its China expansion will include menu with congee, matcha

TORONTO — The president of Tim Hortons says a plan to conquer… Continue reading

Trump suggests Canada has been sidelined from latest NAFTA negotiations

OTTAWA — U.S. President Donald Trump is suggesting Canada has deliberately been… Continue reading

Photographer files complaint with police after alleged assault while on the job

TORONTO — A Toronto newspaper photographer said he opted to file a… Continue reading

Annual inflation rate jumped to 3.0% in July, highest reading since 2011

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says higher gasoline prices helped push the country’s… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month