Four Gamblers Critically Injured in a Bus Accident on Way to Mohegan Sun
Four people were rushed to the hospital in critical condition Tuesday when a bus headed to Mohegan Sun rolled over on I-95 North in Madison. The bus was traveled from Flushing in Queens, New York.
Twenty-two of the 55 passengers on the bus were injured in the crash. Thirty people walked off the bus, but the remaining passengers were transported to area hospitals. Most of those people were treated for inuries to the neck area.
Four People in Critical Condition
Officials at the Yale-New Haven Hospital said the four people in the worst condition were critical, but not grave. The first responders from local fire and rescue departments were given credit for the quick response to the crisis.
First Responders Praised
Bobby Kyttle, the Madison Fire Chief, said his people practice every six months on mass-casualty events like what happened on Tuesday. Kyttle said that preparation helped each firefighter know his responsibility when they arrived at the wreck.
That is important, because some of the members of the response team had to stabilize the wreck, while others needed to see to the injured. A rolled-over bus is in a precarious position, because of its size, potential instability, and large window space.
Windows Broken to Carry Out Passengers
Fire Chief Kyttle, who has been on the job for four years, praised his men: “Some guys, right away, stabilized the bus, while other guys were checking the people that were out of the bus.”
He said that some of the windows on the bus had to be broken to assist in getting passangers safely out of the bus. Kyttle added, “Each person was just being carried out one by one, assessed by the paramedics on scene and taken to the appropriate destination from there.”
Snow Contributed to the Wreck
Kelly Grant, a Connecticut State Police officer who arrived on the scene, said the cause of the bus accident is still under investigation. Officer Grant said it was obvious that the snow on the ground was a contributing factor.
The CSP officer said the bus driver, who drove for Dahlia Tours, spoke about the conditions when describing the wreck. Grant said, “They were merging or changing lanes, from the left lane to the right lane when the vehicle or the bus kind of lost control on the slippery conditions and struck the guard rail.”
Of the 22 people who were admitted to the Yale-New Haven Hospital, half of them have been released. All of the patients still in the hospital are expected to live.
Broken Ribs and Damaged Lungs
Dr. Kimberly Davis is the head trauma surgeon for Yale-New Haven Hospital. Dr. Davis treated several of the bus passengers. She said that many of the injuries were “thoracic” injuries, which includes mid-back to upper-back injuries. Dr. Davis said a variety of the injuries involved chest and lung injuries, as well as rib fractures.
Bus Trips to the Casinos
Casino on the outskirts of the New York City greater metropolitan area plan or advertise bus tours to their gaming establishments. Bethlehem Sands near Philadelphia, along with Foxwoods Casino and Mohegan Sun in Connecticut, have many bus lines which bring busloads of gamblers to their casinos.
Many such tours include senior citizens, who prefer to ride out on a tour as opposed to driving themselves. The high number of seniors might explain the large number of chest and neck injuries from the rollover.
Mohegan Sun advertises 26 different bus companies on its official website, including Dahlia Tours. In the two days since the accident, local media have pointed out the high number of violations 25 of the 26 bus lines have in their data. Nothing yet indicates fault equipment, as the investigation into the accident is still incomplete.
November 2015 Dahlia Tour Bus Shooting
In November 2015, a Connecticut law enforcement official, Trooper Marc Omara, shot and killed a passenger on a Dahlia Tour bus headed to Mohegan Sun. The man was Hua Jian Le, 32, of Chinatown, who began pacing up and down the bus while it was in transit near Stamford. The man began shining his cellphone light on the other 19 passengers, until someone took exception to the interruption.
Hua Jian Le pulled a box cutter on a woman, Meichi Chan, and slashed her in the face with the box cutter. Another passenger, Randy Chan, began to wrestle with the attacked, and they eventually battled to the door of the bus. Passengers began calling 911, but most spoke only Chinese, so police dispatchers could not understand them. The bus driver stopped at a rest stop and signaled Trooper Omara, who saw the two men fall out of the bus. The bus driver was excited and could not tell the officer what was happening.
In the darkness, Omara thought the man had a knife. He shot at Hua Jian Le twice, hitting Randy Chan in the leg and perhaps hitting Hua Jian Le with the other shot. The officer told Le to put down the knife, but he lunged at the officer, who shot him a second time, killing him. Investigators later ruled the homicide justifiable.
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