A “broken down” Montebello transit bus rolled off the fifth street bridge in downtown Los Angeles and landed onto the 110 Freeway during the morning rush hour today.
The crash occurred just before 8 a.m. It was “by luck” that the bus avoided hitting vehicles traveling along the freeway and no one was hurt, said Sgt. Mike Flynn of the LAPD Central Traffic Watch Division.
Flynn said a supervisor from Montebello Bus Lines had been called out to help get the stalled bus going. While the supervisor worked on the bus’ outside control panel, its breaks disengaged. On its way down, the bus hit a Montebello bus supervisor’s van and the bridge guardrail before plunging onto an offramp.
The bus driver had already jumped out of the bus before it went over the bridge. There were no passengers on the bus.
LAPD traffic investigators are preparing a report on the incident. Montebello Bus Lines officials say they will be releasing a statement later this afternoon.
[UPDATE] Montebello Bus Lines issued this statement:
On Friday, September 14, just before 8:00 a.m., an empty Montebello bus waiting to be exchanged for another bus, flipped over onto the southbound 110 Fwy. The out-of-service bus was a hybrid-electric bus purchased in 2009. It was parked west bound on 5 th Street when it rolled back and landed on its right side onto the shoulder area of the Harbor Freeway below. “We have not been able to conclusively determine the cause of the accident. It is currently an open investigation. We are bringing in experts to assist us in conducting a thorough investigation. We’re grateful to report that no one was injured,” said Aurora Jackson, Montebello Bus Lines Director of Transportation.