THE CRASH IN WORDS

Ottawa Citizen - - CITY -

Tran­sit rid­ers on the scene of the West­boro Sta­tion bus crash, those who ar­rived in the chaos-filled mo­ments fol­low­ing im­pact and the com­mu­nity mem­bers deal­ing with the fall­out shared ac­counts of the tragedy Fri­day night.

Here are some of their words.

“The bus just started shak­ing.”

A pas­sen­ger on the bus, a pub­lic ser­vant

“I re­mem­ber hear­ing the bus driver say­ing, ‘Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God.’ Peo­ple just started scream­ing. There was some kind of fluid leak­ing, so ev­ery­body just started jump­ing out of the win­dow in the seat that I was in. You couldn’t get out the doors. Two peo­ple, for sure, flew out of the top front, maybe more.”

A woman who was on the bus, a mem­ber of the mil­i­tary

“The whole top of the bus was to­talled. “I couldn’t be­lieve it, me and my best friend fight to sit at the front of the bus. And now I’m just … ter­ri­fied, it’s ab­so­lutely heart­break­ing.”

An eye­wit­ness who ar­rived within mo­ments of the crash

“As to the driver, I can ad­vise you with­out get­ting into de­tails, there was a re­quire­ment for us to ar­rest her at the scene.

“I can tell you that some­thing led us to ar­rest the in­di­vid­ual and take them to the sta­tion.” Po­lice Chief Charles Borde­leau, speak­ing about the driver of the bus

“We’re hav­ing a mass ca­su­alty event ... there’s some re­ally crit­i­cal pa­tients.”

A doc­tor at The Ot­tawa Hospi­tal’s Civic cam­pus, ad­dress­ing the wait­ing room

“He’s not an­swer­ing his cell­phone. It goes di­rectly to voice­mail. So we’re not re­ally sure.”

Kanata res­i­dent Mary Hawk­eye, who feared her son was on the bus, and hadn’t heard from him since the crash. He later called her from home

“It is with deep sad­ness that I re­port that there were three con­firmed ca­su­al­ties, two of which were on the bus and one that was on the plat­form. Over the com­ing hours and days, the Ot­tawa po­lice and trans­porta­tion ser­vices will con­tinue to look into ex­actly what tran­spired ear­lier today, but our fo­cus for now must be to pro­vide care and sym­pa­thy to those in­jured and af­fected by this tragic ac­ci­dent.”

Ot­tawa Mayor Jim Wat­son, at an evening press con­fer­ence

“Safety and se­cu­rity of our tran­sit sys­tem and our rid­ers is our top pri­or­ity. We’re tak­ing ev­ery nec­es­sary step to es­tab­lish all of the facts and will co­op­er­ate fully with any in­ves­ti­ga­tion.” The city’s trans­porta­tion gen­eral man­ager John Man­coni, at an evening press con­fer­ence

“I want to send my deep­est con­do­lences to the fam­i­lies of vic­tims and ev­ery­one af­fected by today’s tragic bus crash in Ot­tawa. Thank you to the first re­spon­ders who rushed to help — we’re mon­i­tor­ing the sit­u­a­tion closely.”

Prime Min­is­ter Justin Trudeau, in a tweet Fri­day night

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