crimesider

DA waiting on toxicology results in Times Square bus crash

William Dalambert (third from left), 58, speaking with an official at the scene of a bus crash in Times Square that left 14 injured on Tuesday. CBS New York

NEW YORK - It is unclear if the Manhattan District Attorney's office will prosecute the driver of one of the double-decker tour buses involved in a crash that injured 14 people in Times Square, reports CBS New York.

William Dalambert, 58, was arrested Wednesday and charged with driving while ability impaired after the bus he was driving collided with another bus in New York City Tuesday afternoon, knocking over a light pole and sending debris flying.

But the district attorney's office reported preliminary drug and alcohol tests of the Irvington, N.J., man came back negative, and they will not decide whether to prosecute in the case until the full toxicology report is complete, according to the station.

"We are taking this matter seriously and prosecutors in the office's Vehicular Crimes Unit are conducting a thorough investigation," said a statement issued by the DA's office.

Witnesses said the Gray Line double-decker bus that Dalambert was driving was traveling at a high speed when it hit the second bus and toppled a traffic light, snapping the metal pole and careening onto a pedestrian strip. The crash occurred near the TKTS discount Broadway ticket booth, which was crowded with people at the time.

"It was loud enough that everybody was running," witness Edward Miller told CBS New York. "Everybody was running for cover."

The station reports that three of the injured were in serious but stable condition. Fire Department officials said none of the injuries were life-threatening.

"We are very, very fortunate there weren't many more injuries," FDNY Deputy Chief Roger Sakowich told the station. "The size of that light pole with the street light on it could have done a lot more damage."

Police said Dalambert passed a Breathalyzer test but failed two field sobriety tests. Sources told CBS New York the failed tests means the suspect could have been on something other than alcohol. Dalambert voluntarily provided blood and urine samples.

The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission said the suspect is a New Jersey-licensed commercial driver with no active points on his record, according to the station.

In a statement, the MVC said Dalambert has "20 administrative suspensions dating back to June 1993 that began with problems with his vehicle insurance.... His most recent violations are for driving while using a cell phone from a July 23, 2013 incident in East Orange and driving without a license/registration/insurance in Irvington on December 1, 2013."

The driver of the other bus is not facing any charges.

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