Abbotsford crash: Serious collision involving small bus sends multiple people to hospital

More than a dozen people had to be treated by paramedics after a serious multi-vehicle crash involving a small bus carrying farm workers in Abbotsford Tuesday morning.

BC Emergency Health Services said an air ambulance, along with six ground ambulances, responded to the crash in the 32000 block of MacLure Road.

Sixteen patients were treated and five sent to hospital, including three who were in critical condition.

“It was scary. It was scary and terrifying,” said Mandeep Singh, who lives nearby and went to the scene after hearing the crash.

Video from the scene shortly after the accident shows the front end of a mangled red truck, a shattered windshield and damaged front end of a shuttle bus, as well as another damaged vehicle.

Witnesses tell CTV News Vancouver they heard tires screeching and that the crash sounded like a bomb going off.

Stephen Appleton lives nearby and rushed barefoot to the scene.

“My heart almost fell out of my chest when I saw the bus, two other vehicles, a bunch of people scrambling,” he says.

Appleton, who knows first aid, says he first went to the bus.

“The driver was trapped, had both his legs pinned between the seat and the dash and the steering wheel,” Appleton explained.

He says after doing what he could for the bus driver, he moved to the truck where an unconscious driver was also trapped.

“I couldn’t free him. The only thing I could do is lean him back. I did a rapid body check,” he says.

Singh says firefighters were needed to free the trapped drivers.

“Firefighters did their job well. They cut the vehicle and took the people out of the vehicle,” Singh explained.

A spokesperson for the company that owns the shuttle bus says there were nine farm workers on board at the time of the accident. Manjit Gill says the workers were headed to a nursery.

Casandra Appleton also heard the crash and ran to the scene, carrying her baby.

“It took a while for police even to get here,” she said.

Appleton says she tried to comfort some of those involved in the accident.

“I did try and help some of the women to get them to calm down and settle down,” she said.

The road was blocked off for hours as police investigated.

Neighbours say there are far too many accidents on McClure Road and that too many drivers speed there.

Police say they are still trying to piece together what led to the accident Tuesday.