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14 Remain Hospitalized After Pennsylvania Church Bus Crash, 6 in Critical Condition


More than a dozen high school girls and volunteers from the Lives Changed By Christ Church remain hospitalized this morning, nearly two days after their charter bus crashed on a return trip to Pennsylvania following a weekend ministry retreat in New York State.

Bus Was Returning from Church Retreat in New York State

The crash occurred shortly after 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, September 19th, just off the southbound exit ramp from Interstate 81 to PA Route 25 in Foster Township, Schuylkill County.

According to the Pennsylvania State Police, the vehicle ran off the highway and onto the right shoulder before going through the exit ramp. The bus then crossed Route 25, hit the center guardrail and an embankment, and finally came to rest in a wooded area about 50 feet away.

More than 30 passengers were traveling from the retreat in Lake Champion, New York, to the LCBC’s Manheim campus in Lancaster County, and all suffered varying degrees of injury. Thirty-two people, including the bus driver, were taken to area hospitals, several by medical helicopter.

31 Passengers Hospitalized After Church Bus Crash

According to Senior Pastor David Ashcraft, 18 students and staff had been released from the hospital as of Monday afternoon. Thirteen passengers were still receiving treatment, including six listed in critical condition.

The bus driver, a 37-year-old man from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, suffered a fractured ankle and was last listed as stable.

The Pennsylvania State Police have yet to determine the cause of the crash. However, an official with the bus company, Premiere #1 Limousine Service, told the Harrisburg Patriot-News that investigators are looking into the possibility that the driver might have experienced a medical emergency just before the vehicle left the road.

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