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Bystander Injured, 10 Cars Hit by Runaway MTA Bus

Several Brooklyn residents got a scare when an empty city bus raced past them—backward—striking numerous cars parked on the street, prompting pedestrians to jump out of the way, and causing injury to one man after knocking a car into him. The bus finally came to a stop when it crumpled an iron gate and slammed into the wall of a church.

The bus was empty at the time and it was after midnight, which may have prevented additional damage and injury.

Late-Night Mayhem Caught on Video

The event began around 12:30 a.m. Wednesday, June 21, on Palmetto Street in Bushwick. A new MTA bus driver (reportedly only her third day on the job) parked a bus near the corner of Myrtle and Knickerbocker. Unfortunately, it appears that the bus was left running in neutral and the parking brake was not engaged.

While the driver was outside, the bus either slipped into gear or simply started to roll. It then went on a backward ghost trip for several blocks down one-way Knickerbocker Avenue, striking and damaging at least ten vehicles along the way. Part of the out-of-control trip was caught on video by witnesses, providing dramatic footage for the local news.

Several people along the path of the bus had to quickly dodge it, but one man wasn’t lucky enough to completely avoid injury. He was changing a tire and avoided being hit directly but may have been struck by one of the cars the bus hit. He was taken to the hospital with relatively minor injuries, including a broken foot.

Improvements Needed

New York City is a unique environment, and unique accidents like this one happen here. But those who use the streets—in cars, on buses, or on foot—should expect to be able to do so safely.

Thanks in part to the Vision Zero effort championed by the mayor, the city as a whole has seen a decrease in traffic fatalities overall since 2013, even as the national trend has gone in the other direction.

Last year, however, there was a small increase in fatal pedestrian accidents, which account for more than half of all deadly crashes on our streets. Typically, several dozen pedestrians are seriously injured and five to ten are killed each year by MTA buses. Safety improvements and enforcement actions have been increasing, but there’s still a long way to go.

Brooklyn Bus Accident Lawyer

To protect your rights when you’ve been injured in an accident involving an MTA bus or any other transit vehicle, some documents must be filed quickly (in many cases within 90 days after the incident).

With the strict rules and deadlines involved in vehicle accident injury cases, it’s important to work with someone who understands the system, like the team at Greenstein & Milbauer, LLP. We have extensive experience with bus accident cases, and we offer a free consultation to every client. Call us at 1-800-VICTIM2 (842-8462) or fill out our online contact form below to learn more.

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