A South Jersey bus driver is drawing criticism Friday night for driving through a barricade on a snowy roadway with a dangling wire.
But it's what happened after he went through that's most alarming to authorities.
You should never try to touch a downline. This video shows exactly what electric company officials warn you against.
A school bus driver, outside the bus, pulling a dangling wire caught on the vehicle.
It happened along 46th Street in Pennsauken. The bus drove over cones, and into yellow caution tape that had been blocking a road where a utility line snapped.
"I was in shock. In shock," Renee Boyd of Pennsauken said.
Boyd shot video from her bedroom window.
She said, "He goes to grab one of the cones that were in the street and he's using the cone to get the power lines from dislodged in the bus."
Moments later the unknown driver threw cones to the side and ripped the tape to continue down the street with children on board.
"I was concerned the power line was live and something was gonna happen to kids on the bus, him and everyone who was out there," Boyd said.
They were lucky, but that same morning another New Jersey man died when his car caught fire after he drove onto fallen power lines in Bergen County.
Downed lines have been a major problem thanks to two nor'easters in less than a week.
Greg Smore from PECO said, "If a line is somehow on a car or anything like that we recommend that you call the police immediately - call 911."
PECO officials say they try to de-energize live wires quickly but point out you can never be certain a line is dead.
"There are times that lines could be re-energized - you won't know if a line is energized. There's a time when power might be out in a neighborhood and people might assume that the line is dead as well but we always ask our customers to assume that a line is energized - that means stay away," Smore said.
The bus was not a Pennsauken School District bus. It belongs to Holcomb Bus Service in Logan Township. The company official says the bus is leased out and the driver is not their employee.
Overall, some very lucky folks here and a lesson for all of us.
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NJ bus driver goes through snowy barricade with dangling wire
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