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Passenger Trains > Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania Updated W/ Pics


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Date: 09/14/11 06:36
Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania Updated W/ Pics
Author: houstonguy2010

My wife was going from PGH to HAR and took the 6:20am Megabus. She is going to take The Pennsylvanian back. Just before the Sideling Hill rest area on the PA turnpike a tractor trailer hit the Megabus. Minor injuries and some broken windows. The truck did not even stop. My wife is a police officer and was sitting in the upper level front seat. She took a picture of the truck and the troopers stopped it in Breezewood. Hopefully she will still make 43! She said the impact was strong enough to knock her out of her seat into the floor!

Here are pictures of the bus...note where the white wifi sign is the tire marks of the truck. Broken side window. The front windows on the upper level were cracked as well but you cannot see in this picture. The last picture is the one that my wife took about one minutes after the actual crash. My wife is now on her way to the HAR AMTK station to have a nice comfy ride back to PGH in business class...

UPDATE>>The truck driver was charged with leaving the scene of an accident.

I also want to say thanks to Kris the Megabus driver. My wife said that he did an outstanding job of keeping the bus under control. The truck hit from the right and was trying to push the bus into the highway divider. The Megabus driver was on the horn and the truck kept pushing. The driver hit the brakes after seeing no vehicles behind the bus. This accident could have been much worse than it was.



Edited 6 time(s). Last edit at 09/14/11 12:17 by houstonguy2010.








Date: 09/14/11 06:39
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: Jishnu

Unfortunately trucks have been proving to be quite a nuisance this year, haven't they?



Date: 09/14/11 06:57
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: Lackawanna484

houstonguy2010 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> My wife was going from PGH to HAR and took the
> 6:20am Megabus. She is going to take The
> Pennsylvanian back. Just before the Sideling Hill
> rest area on the PA turnpike a tractor trailer hit
> the Megabus. Minor injuries and some broken
> windows. The truck did not even stop. My wife is
> a police officer and was sitting in the upper
> level front seat. She took a picture of the truck
> and the troopers stopped it in Breezewood.
> Hopefully she will still make 43! She said the
> impact was strong enough to knock her out of her
> seat into the floor!

Glad to hear your wife is OK.

The Pennsy Turnpike, in some sections, is a really obsolete road. Narrow lanes in some sections, thin shoulders, super fast travel speeds, and perennial death traps like the exit to I-70 eastbound. Trucks back up into the travel lanes, there



Date: 09/14/11 07:21
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: billwood

Greetings from eastbound 42; we just left Altoona a few minutes ago pretty close to schedule. The good news is that after the flooding disruptions from a few days ago, the Pennsylvanians are now back to a regular operating schedule.



Date: 09/14/11 07:37
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: GenePoon

Lackawanna484 Wrote:

> The Pennsy Turnpike, in some sections, is a really obsolete road. Narrow lanes in some sections,
> thin shoulders, super fast travel speeds, and perennial death traps like the exit to I-70
> eastbound. Trucks back up into the travel lanes, there.


Trucks back up traffic on the PA Turnpike routinely. There are some of these "road warriors" who think nothing of trying
to overtake another "road warrior" ... at one or two mph faster than the vehicle they are trying to overtake. And then
they encounter a hill and slow down. Pull back in and let faster traffic pass?

THIS IS PENNSYLVANIA. WE ARE TRUCKERS. KNIGHTS OF THE ROAD. NO WAY!

They seem to be giving the finger to those who back up behind them for miles as they pull these antics. I'm not saying
PA truck drivers are the worst in the world. Chinese and Mexican ones are a little bit worse. Just like I'm not saying the
PA Turnpike as a whole is a deathtrap; there are roads in India, Ecuador and Peru that are a little bit worse.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/14/11 08:10 by GenePoon.



Date: 09/14/11 07:52
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: djansson

Didn't they build this road back in the '50s?



Date: 09/14/11 08:03
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: toledopatch

djansson Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Didn't they build this road back in the '50s?

The central part of the Pennsylvania Turnpike is even older than that. Carlisle to Irwin opened in 1940. However, a section from the Breezewood interchange to east of the Sideling Hill service plaza is a "line relocation" built in the 1960s to bypass the Sideling Hill and Rays Hill tunnels. So it seems doubtful to me that the turnpike's geometrics were a factor in this particular incident, as the 1960s construction standards are relatively modern.

I'm curious about the narrative in this thread, though. If the offending semi hit the Megabus approaching the Sideling Hill service plaza, and the bus was headed eastbound, how is it that the trucker was apprehended in Breezewood? Breezewood is west of Sideling Hill.

Edited to add: A lot of other modernization has occurred during the past 15 years or so. For example, I noted during an eastbound trip over the Alleghenies last year that the serpentine westbound route up the mountain out of Bedford, which was built at least in part using the grade of the unfinished South Penn Railway, had been recently replaced with a new, much straighter roadway.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/14/11 08:07 by toledopatch.



Date: 09/14/11 08:06
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: GenePoon

djansson Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Didn't they build this road back in the '50s?


Construction of the PA Turnpike began in 1938. The first portion was completed in 1940.

The first portion of the PA Turnpike used six tunnels and parts of the grade of the never-completed,
New York Central-sponsored South Pennsylvania Railroad from the 1880s. Some of the tunnels
have since been bypassed by relocation of the roadway. There has been considerable modernization
of the Turnpike since it was built, but as toledopatch says, to 1960s standards, not generally to more
recent standards except in the most built-up areas near big cities.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/14/11 08:09 by GenePoon.



Date: 09/14/11 08:08
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: Chooch

The PA Turnpike was built and opened in sections. The first section which was out in the western part of the state was opened back in the 1930's. I drive the Turnpike often and have done so for over 50 years so I have seen a lot of improvements. To the driver who is new to the Turnpike, things can be sometime confusing and monotonous but generally, if you keep your mind on the road and pay attention, you won't have a problem. YES, lets get the trucks off the Turnpike and put them on flatbed rail cars where they belong.

Jim



Date: 09/14/11 08:32
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: bluesboyst

Yes,,,lot's of trucking issues this year... I think they should impose a 55 mph speed limit on them....nation wide.....It is just to congested to have then flying around at 70-80 mph....yes, even in the west....



Date: 09/14/11 08:36
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: goneon66

bluesboyst Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Yes,,,lot's of trucking issues this year... I
> think they should impose a 55 mph speed limit on
> them....nation wide.....It is just to congested to
> have then flying around at 70-80 mph....yes, even
> in the west....

i agree.........

66



Date: 09/14/11 08:39
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: toledopatch

Trucks traveling at 55 when all other traffic can go 65 or 70 only makes matters worse, because it induces a lot of lane jockeying to get around the trucks (assuming they honor the speed limit).



Date: 09/14/11 08:42
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: cashfare

Existing traffic laws are not enforced....its nothing for 90% of the population to be flying down the highway at 80MPH +, weaving in and out of their lanes and never using turn signals. Its amazing how easy it is to get and keep a license. This goes for personal autos as well as "professional" CDL holders. The technology exists to crack down on and eliminate most of this, IF we were serious about it.



Date: 09/14/11 08:49
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: toledopatch

cashfare Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Existing traffic laws are not enforced....its
> nothing for 90% of the population to be flying
> down the highway at 80MPH +, weaving in and out of
> their lanes and never using turn signals. Its
> amazing how easy it is to get and keep a license.
> This goes for personal autos as well as
> "professional" CDL holders. The technology exists
> to crack down on and eliminate most of this, IF we
> were serious about it.

Heh. I'd say it applies even moreso to personal drivers. We all remember the "barreling semi" that cut us off or did other dangerous things, but the vast majority of trucks I see on the road are operated safely -- and certainly a much higher percentage than that of personal automobiles.



Date: 09/14/11 08:53
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: shoretower

This one certainly doesn't sound like it was Megabus' fault. The various posters complaining about "knights of the road" should be aware that FMCSA (Moter Carrier Safety Administration, USDOT) has a major truck safety initiative underway this year called CSA. That stands for "compliance, safety, accountability". CDLs are now issued at the Federal level; no more having 20 different ones from different states to avoid having a bad driving record follow you around. CSA will rate drivers based on their safety performance, and rate trucking companies based on the quality of their drivers. The ratings will be available to shippers. It's estimated this will drive out about 10% of CDL holders who are "bad apples", making everyone safer.

Also, although it's currently tied up in litigation, FMCSA will be requiring electronic on-board recorders (EOBRs) that will track speed, hours on duty, and location. No more falsifying log books. This will likely result in longer travel times for trucks (by the way, and contrary to the popular perception, 75% of all truck trips -- for "big rigs" -- go less than 500 miles).

All of this will increase the cost of trucking, resulting in higher rates and -- wait for it -- more traffic on the railroads.



Date: 09/14/11 09:30
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: GenePoon

toledopatch Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Trucks traveling at 55 when all other traffic can go 65 or 70 only makes matters worse, because it
> induces a lot of lane jockeying to get around the trucks (assuming they honor the speed limit).
===============================================

That is a MAJOR assumption and leap of faith on the PA Turnpike...and in most regions.



Date: 09/14/11 09:45
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: WAF

Didn't stop? Sure hope someone got the trailer lic



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/14/11 09:45 by WAF.



Date: 09/14/11 10:19
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: abyler

Lackawanna484 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> The Pennsy Turnpike, in some sections, is a really
> obsolete road. Narrow lanes in some sections,
> thin shoulders, super fast travel speeds, and
> perennial death traps like the exit to I-70
> eastbound. Trucks back up into the travel lanes,
> there

I disagree completely. PA Turnpike bashers usually are entirely ignorant of roadway design and design history.

The PA Turnpike was built to very modern geometric standards following the original German Autobahn with normal 12 ft. lanes, a 10 ft. outside shoulder, and most curves set for a 90 mph advisory speed limit (there was no speed limit on the original portion of the Turnpike until World War II) with significant superelevation and curves limited to 6 degrees or less (most were 3 degrees or less), like on a racetrack. These same geometrics were carried forward on the added parts in the 1950's and the portions reconstructed later on like Sideling Hill, and they became the standards set for the Interstate system. The high jersey barrier in the middle of the road prevents crossover head-on collisions which are fairly common on roads with just a median strip. There are numerous large areas to pull far off the road on the right shoulder and park in an emergency or to catch a nap in safety and it is legal to do so, unlike on most interstates where you are not actually allowed to stop on the side of the road.

Why are there super high speeds on the PA Turnpike? Because when the pavement is dry, the curve geometry supports 110 mph speeds, and even 80 mph speeds in the rain and snow. Drivers tend to drive automatically to the design speed of the road, or as near to it as they feel comfortable. The PA, OH, and NJ Turnpikes are actually the roads designed for the highest speeds in the northeastern US.

The back-ups at I-70 in heavy traffic have nothing to do with the design of the Turnpike, but concern Congress originally forbidding the Interstate system from directly connecting to existing toll roads (this is why so many exits in New Jersey and Ohio on their turnpikes also missed the crossing Interstates), causing people to have to travel through the town of Breezewood to get to I-70, as the designers of the interstates dumped I-70 on the wrong side of Breezewood from the turnpike exit. Since the lifting of this restriction, Pennsylvania has prioritized reconstructing connections directly to I-79, I-176, and I-95 over the I-70 (and also the I-81) exit.



Date: 09/14/11 10:20
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: IC_2024

Glad your wife's okay, too... she really was on the ball to get the photo of the rig that hit them. Good work!



Date: 09/14/11 10:55
Re: Megabus Accident Today In Pennsylvania
Author: GenePoon

abyler Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> Why are there super high speeds on the PA Turnpike? Because when the pavement is dry, the
> curve geometry supports 110 mph speeds, and even 80 mph speeds in the rain and snow. Drivers tend
> to drive automatically to the design speed of the road, or as near to it as they feel comfortable.


NO, and you are a fool if you believe that is "justifiable" in the least.

It is because those drivers are "me-first" scofflaws who deserve to be cooling their heels with "automatically" suspended
and revoked driver's licenses.



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