At Least 4 Die in School Bus, Truck Crashes on I-78 in Berks Co.

The second multi-vehicle crash on Interstate 78 eastbound Tuesday night occurred after traffic was detoured for the first wreck, Pennsylvania State Police said

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What to Know

  • Two related crashes about two hours and 10 miles apart left Interstate 78 eastbound in Berks County closed for hours Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.
  • The first wreck in Tilden Township involved a school bus with no children on board and left two people dead, Pennsylvania State Police said.
  • The second wreck in Upper Tulpehocken Township involved a truck and left at least two dead, police said.

Interstate 78 in Berks County, Pennsylvania, reopened Wednesday morning after two related multi-vehicle crashes -- one involving a new school bus -- two hours and 10 miles apart left at least four people dead and the eastbound lanes closed for hours overnight.

The first crash occurred around 8:20 p.m. near milepost 27.4 in Tilden Township, Pennsylvania State Police said.

A 69-year-old Georgia woman who was driving an empty school bus failed to stop in a construction zone near Hamburg and slammed into the back of a sedan, killing the 20-year-old driver, authorities said. The bus then went over the top of the sedan and rear-ended an SUV, killing the front-seat passenger, police said.

SkyForce10 was over the scene and captured the school bus as well as a heavily damaged vehicle surrounded by first responders. Multiple people were trapped inside the vehicles. First responders were able to get them out.

The bus was new and was being driven to Canada for delivery, police said.

About two hours later, a 64-year-old truck driver who was being detoured off I-78 around 10:20 p.m. near milepost 18.1 in Upper Tulpehocken Township because of the earlier crash failed to slow down for stopped traffic and rear-ended a van, causing a chain-reaction crash involving three other vehicles, police said.

Killed were a 24-year-old woman from Reading who was riding in the back seat of a sedan, and a 54-year-old man from Williamsport who was driving an SUV, police said.

Police didn't reveal how many people were hurt in either of the wrecks.

The names of the victims were not immediately released. No one had been charged as of Wednesday morning as police continued to investigate.

I-78 reopened around 4 a.m. Wednesday.

Copyright Associated Press
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