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18 July 2014
UPDATED TO INCLUDE INFORMATION FROM PRESS CONFERENCE: Commercial bus rollover on I-87 in Essex County
NEW YORK STATE POLICE
Major Richard Smith
Troop B Commander
UPDATED TO INCLUDE INFORMATION FROM PRESS CONFERENCE
One person has been killed and 55 others taken to local hospitals following a commercial bus crash in Essex County, New York.
Around 8:00 am on July 18, 2014, a commercial bus operated by Autobus Fleur de Lys of Quebec overturned in the median of I-87 in North Hudson, NY.
The bus was traveling from Trois-Rivières (Three Rivers), Quebec to New York City carrying 55 passengers, operated by a 61-year-old driver.
Upon State Police arrival, one individual was at least partially ejected from the bus, which then came to rest on the victim.
Passersby worked alongside State Police to help get the person out from underneath the bus. Rescuers used jack stands to lift the bus. A State Trooper used an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) as part of lifesaving efforts, but the victim did succumb to her injuries.
The deceased has been identified as 14-year-old Chelssy Mercier of Quebec The teen’s mother was also traveling on the bus.
U.S., Canadian, state and local law enforcement including the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Sûreté du Québec, along with multiple fire and rescue agencies from Essex County responded to assist the State Police.
French interpreters have also responded to assist the mostly French speaking victims.
According to the Essex County Emergency Medical Services Coordinator, Patty Bashaw, 41 people were considered “walking wounded” patients, 10 were injured but not critically and three were considered “red category” and needed immediate transport to a medical center.
All passengers were transported to local hospitals for treatment or evaluation including Champlain Valley Physicians Hospital in Plattsburgh, New York, Fletcher Allen Health Care Medical Center in Burlington, Vermont, Glens Falls Hospital in Glens Falls, New York and Elizabethtown Community Hospital in Elizabethtown, New York.
Ten different EMS squads and one Life Flight helicopter assisted in transporting the bus passengers.
The New York State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Team and Collision Reconstruction Unit are taking measurements to reconstruct the accident.
The cause of the crash has not yet been determined.
The 61-year-old driver is a Canadian citizen. He is not being identified at this time, but has been inspected as a driver three times in the past year and has passed all three inspections.
There is currently no reason to believe he had a problem with his driving credentials.
Following accident reconstruction, the 2008 bus will be impounded and taken to Troop B Headquarters in Ray Brook.
The National Transportation Security Board and New York State Transportation Safety Board have been notified of the accident.
Arrangements are being made to get the bus passengers back to Canada with the help of Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Sûreté du Québec.
Essex County Coroner Walter Marvin responded and authorized removal of the deceased to Adirondack Medical Center in Saranac Lake. An autopsy will be performed at a later date.
Other agencies assisting at the scene:
Essex County Sheriff’s Office
Warren County Sheriff’s Office
United States Border Patrol
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Homeland Security Investigations
Ticonderoga Police Department
Quebec Provincial Police
NYS Department of Transportation Commercial Vehicle Inspectors
Collision remains under investigation. Further updates will be provided as they become available.
UPDATE - A press conference is scheduled for 1:00 pm at the High Peaks rest stop, I-87 north bound at mile marker 99.
New York State Police are on the scene of a commercial bus rollover on I-87 in the Town of North Hudson, Essex County. The bus was traveling south on I-87 from Quebec City to New York City when it veered off the shoulder of the highway and into the median at around 8:00 am.
The bus had one operator and 55 passengers. There is one confirmed fatality. Several others are being treated for mostly minor injuries at three area hospitals, Glens Falls Hospital, Glens Falls, NY, Fletcher Allen Health Care Medical Center, Burlington, VT and Elizabethtown Community Hospital, Elizabethtown, NY.
Motorists traveling in the area of the accident should expect long delays. The passing lanes both north and sound bound are closed.
Several area fire departments and the Essex County Sheriff’s Office are assisting at the scene.
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