NJ Transit paratransit bus involved in accident in Maple Shade Township

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October 16, 2013 8:34:04 PM PDT
Authorities are investigating an accident involving a New Jersey Transit paratransit bus in Burlington County.

The accident happened around 6:15 p.m. Wednesday on East Kings Highway and Route 38 in Maple Shade Township.

Police say a New Jersey Transit paratransit bus collided with a white Chevy Equinox SUV and crashed over a guardrail, landing in a heavily wooded ravine.

The circumstances surrounding the crash are still not entirely clear.

"I just couldn't figure out how it actually happened until I saw some of the skid marks on the road," Maple Shade resident Matt Hoffman said.

The driver of the SUV was out of his vehicle by the time paramedics arrived, but the bus driver and his passenger were trapped inside.

"We had patients inside that vehicle, so we had to make sure before we even went in there and got them, we stabilized that vehicle so our guys could go in there and get them," Maple Shade Fire Chief Kevin Greenfield said.

The two men were carefully extracted and taken to Cooper University Hospital.

The driver of the SUV was transported to Kennedy University Hospital.

All three victims are said to have suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

In addition to gathering the facts of how the accident happened, authorities had to figure out how to remove the transit bus which was entangled precariously among some trees on top of a 50 foot high ravine.

"It was a crazy way the bus landed, so we had to find out a way to get that bus out of the embankment," Greenfield said.

They ended up using two large tow trucks, one in the rear of the bus and one at the front, to carefully roll it down below.

It took them a good half hour, but slowly but surely they finally got the paratransit bus down below without crashing into anything else.

There were cameras onboard the transit bus so investigators are hoping to retrieve the footage to help them figure out what happened.

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