TOBYHANNA, Pa. — A tractor-trailer and a bus carrying Italian tourists collided Wednesday on a highway in eastern Pennsylvania, killing three people and sending a dozen to hospitals, authorities said.
The crash occurred shortly after 10 a.m. on Interstate 380 in the Pocono Mountain region about 75 miles northwest of New York City.
The mangled front end of the bus was left upright on the highway but wedged into the side of the tractor-trailer, which was sheared in half. The cab came to rest on its side in the woods next to the road, one of its axles torn off.
Monroe County Coroner Robert Allen told reporters at the scene that the death toll had climbed from two to three. Thirteen people were taken to hospitals after the crash, said Matt Kislak of the county 911 center.
State police said a second tractor-trailer was reported to have been involved, but investigators were still trying to determine what happened.
The tour bus had the name of the Academy Bus company on its side, but a spokesman did not have any information on the accident. The bus appears to have been operated by Viaggidea, an Italian tour operator whose name is also on the bus. The company operates tours that head from New York to Niagara Falls and Canada and elsewhere around the country.
The tractor-trailer was leased by the Xtra Lease company, and the company’s attorney said officials did not yet know who was leasing the vehicle.
After hearing a loud crash, “all of a sudden people were screaming,” Johnny Walsh, who lives near the highway, told WCAU-TV in Philadelphia.
Pop singer Gloria Estefan suffered a broken vertebra when a tractor-trailer crashed into her tour bus on the same stretch of highway in 1990 while heading to a concert in Syracuse, New York.