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State Police: Second person dies following Megabus crash on New Jersey Turnpike

2nd person dies after Megabus crashes on New Jersey Turnpike
2nd person dies after Megabus crashes on New Jersey Turnpike 02:23

NEW YORK -- There is new information on the fatal bus crash that happened on Tuesday night in New Jersey.

State police told CBS2's Lisa Rozner a second person has died, three others have serious injuries, and 14 more have minor injuries.

Police say when the Megabus struck a guard rail in Woodbridge and overturned, a passenger, 59-year-old Cheryl Johnson of the Bronx, was pronounced dead at the scene, and 66-year-old Cecilia Kiyanitza of Woodbury in South Jersey was airlifted to a hospital, where she later died.

The trip started on 34th Street near 11th Avenue in Manhattan at around 6 p.m. and was headed to Philadelphia.

People getting on that trip Wednesday from the same starting point were shocked.

"I'm so sorry for the loss. I'm really upset for the family, too," said Shanaz Tehrani of Philadelphia.

Soufyane Elkaoukge, who was visiting from Philadelphia, said the level of safety felt "depends on the driver."

Police say the driver in Tuesday's crash lost control of the bus as it was headed to the Thomas Edison Service Area off the New Jersey Turnpike. It struck a vehicle traveling in the left center lane next to it, and then went off the road, struck a guard rail and overturned on the service ramp.

The driver is a 56-year-old from Westville, New Jersey. Megabus said the driver underwent two surgeries and is in recovery.

In addition to the driver, police say 22 people were on the bus.

"That's not something you should have to worry about traveling ... which is tragic," a New York City resident said.

Statistics from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration show Megabus Northeast has had at least two crashes with injuries in the last two years.

This past May, 15 passengers were hospitalized after a Megabus rolled onto its side, crashing on I-95 north of Baltimore.

Riders told Rozner that Megabus offers an affordable alternative to the train, and the crashes won't stop them from taking it.

"People are always questionable drivers, I'll put it that way. But when you live in a city and it's not practical to have a car, like what else are you supposed to do? You know? It's either this or Amtrak," A Philadelphia resident said.

The investigation of Tuesday night's crash is ongoing.

Megabus told CBS2 in a statement, "Our deepest condolences go to the families of the two deceased."

A spokesperson said the company is assisting the surviving passengers "in a variety of ways."

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