An MTA bus driver was killed in Manhattan yesterday after hise bus collided with a stolen truck in Greenwich Village, according to transit and police officials.
The crash occurred at 5:30 a.m. on the corner of Seventh Avenue and West 14th Street. The driver of the M14 bus was heading east on West 14th Street as the driver of the stolen truck was going south on Seventh Avenue, according to the NYPD.. The collision caused the vehciles to crash into a building's scaffolding.
The driver, 49-year-old William Pena of Hillside, N.J., was ejected from the bus and pinned beneath, according to a spokesman with the Transport Workers Union Local 100. He had been working at the MTA for 17 years.
"The entire MTA mourns the tragic loss of Mr. Pena, especially his colleagues at the Michael J. Quill Bus Depot in Manhattan," MTA chairman and CEO Tom Prendergast said in a statement.
TWU Local 100 President John Samuelsen said in a statement that "a lot of tears are being shed" at the Michael J. Quill Bus Depot for Pena.
"He was a very gentle man, highly, highly respected by his fellow bus operators at Mike Quill depot and just a tremendous loss to the union," Samuelsen told amNY. He added that he plans to visit Pena's bus depot.
The truck operator, a 22-year-old man whose identity has not been released, sustained a minor injury and was arrested while at Bellevue Hospital. He picked up the box truck on 16th Street between 8th and 9th avenues, according to the NYPD. The NYPD and the Manhattan district attorney's office are investigating the accident. Police officers found the two vehicles during a canvass of the area in response to a 911 call of a burglary, according to the NYPD.
The crash caused other injuries, including a bus passenger, two pedestrians and a person riding a three-wheeled scooter hit by the delivery truck before the collision. They were taken to Bellevue Hospital in stable condition.