An 86-mile stretch of the Pennsylvania Turnpike was closed for much of Sunday after a deadly crash involving a tour bus, three tractor-trailers and a passenger vehicle.
Five people were killed in the crash, Westmoreland County Coroner Ken Bacha told the Tribune-Review. About 60 people were injured and taken to three area hospitals, turnpike spokesman Carl DeFebo tweeted.
The tour bus was traveling on a downhill curve and struck an embankment, according to the Pennsylvania State Police. The bus was hit by the tractor-trailers: two UPS trucks and a FedEx truck, which were loaded with parcels. A private passenger vehicle was also involved in the crash.
The crash happened about 3:40 a.m. Sunday in Westmoreland County, about 30 miles east of Pittsburgh, around mile marker 86. The crash closed the turnpike in both directions between New Stanton at Exit 75 and Breezewood at Exit 161, DeFebo tweeted.
Snow showers were moving through western Pennsylvania Sunday morning, weather.com meteorologist Christopher Dolce said.
Angela Maynard, a tractor-trailer driver from Kentucky who stopped at the crash site, told the Tribune-Review the roads were wet from snow but not especially icy.
Pennsylvania Turnpike Public Information Manager Rene Colborne told CNN the speed limit is 70 mph in the crash area. The road conditions seemed to be “fine” and the roads are treated 24/7, she said.
A spokeswoman for Excela Health said 25 people ranging in age from 7 to 52 were being evaluated at Excela Frick Hospital in Mount Pleasant. Two patients were to be transferred to a trauma hospital, she said. Their conditions were not available.
Eleven people were taken to Forbes Regional Hospital in Monroeville. One is in critical condition, and the others are in fair condition, according to a hospital spokeswoman.
Eighteen patients taken to UPMC Somerset have been treated and released. UPMC Presbyterian was treating three people. A child was treated at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh in Lawrenceville, a UPMC spokeswoman said. Their conditions were not available.
The National Transportation Safety Board has sent a team to investigate the crash.
FedEx spokeswoman Allie Addoms provided this statement: “First and foremost we extend our deepest condolences to the families of the individuals involved in this accident. There is no higher priority for FedEx Ground than safety, and we are cooperating fully with investigating authorities at this time.”
A UPS spokesperson said that one of their vehicles was involved in the crash and issued the following statement: “UPS is cooperating with authorities in the investigation and we express our deepest sympathies to the victims and their families and friends.”