Three people were killed and another seriously injured after a bus in Jerusalem lost control and plowed into a bus stop outside a shopping center on a major road near the entrance to the capital, according to first responders.
The Magen David Adom ambulance service identified those killed in the crash on Jerusalem’s Shamgar Street as a woman in her 30s, a 7-year-old girl and a 3-year-old girl. Channel 12 news said the woman was pregnant and that one of the girls was her daughter.
MDA said another six people were injured and taken to local hospitals, including a 21-year-old woman who was seriously hurt. Two other people were listed as in moderate condition and the others were lightly hurt.
The Israel Fire and Rescue Services emergency teams had worked to extract several people trapped beneath the bus.
Police announced the launch of an investigation into the deadly crash, in which the bus driver apparently lost control and plowed into pedestrians outside the mall, killing at least three. However, Channel 13 news cited witnesses saying the driver got out of the bus to close the luggage compartment but apparently forgot to turn on the handbrake, with the vehicle then beginning to quickly roll away on its own.
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The bus was empty at the time of the crash, Channel 12 reported.
עדי ראייה: הנהג יצא לסגור את תא המטען והאוטובוס התדרדר במהירות
לתיעוד המלא – https://t.co/Qq7QijmTAG pic.twitter.com/iQLm750Pon
— חדשות 13 (@newsisrael13) August 11, 2022
“Bus drivers are collapsing and most of them drive long hours everyday because of a shortage of more than 5,000 drivers. The buses have become a ticking time bomb because of the grave shortage. The time has come for the Transportation Ministry to relate to this seriously,” a bus drivers union said in response to the accident.
The incident came just two days after a similar incident in Jerusalem, in which a 70-year-old man was killed when a bus lost control and crashed into a building.
It also came on the heels of a particularly bloody day on Israeli roads, with six people killed in traffic incidents around Israel and the West Bank on Wednesday and Thursday.