The roughly 30 people who were injured in a bus crash in Schuylkill County Sunday were Lancaster County high school students and volunteers returning from a church retreat.
The bus crash occurred around 2:36 p.m. on Interstate 81 at the end of the southbound ramp of Exit 112 to PA Route 25 in Foster Township, state police spokesman Trooper David Beohm told Pennlive Sunday.
The injured were from Lives Changed by Christ Church’s Manheim campus, WNEP is reporting.
In a report released by state police Sunday night, investigators said a 37-year-old Lancaster man was driving a Van Hool bus when he lost control, veered off of the highway and onto the right shoulder, went through the gore and the exit ramp to Route 25.
The bus traveled across Route 25, where it hit a center guide rail, then hit an embankment and went 50 yards into a wooded area.
State police said approximately 30 people sustained varying degrees of injuries. Some reports indicated as many as 32 people were injured in the crash. Beohm told PennLive six of those hurt in the crash were critically injured.
Police did not list all of the occupants of the bus but did say there was at least one 15-year-old passenger.
The students and volunteers from the Manheim church were returning from the LCBC High School Ministry Fall Retreat in Lake Champion, New York, CBS 21 is reporting.
CBS 21 cited a letter from church leaders, saying the injured included 31 freshmen and sophomore girls and their leaders, who were transported to five area hospitals. Four were flown by helicopter for treatment.
A crash like this is a challenging situation for rescue workers, Tremont Fire Chief Brian Eisenacher told WNEP.
“When something like this happens, it’s people shaking all around the bus. It takes some time to get in and get people out of the situation,” Eisenacher told WNEP. “The guys on the bus did a great job. We took out what we had to take out. Everybody was out and on their way to the hospital pretty quickly.”
About 100 first responders were called to the scene, including crews from Dauphin and Lebanon counties.
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