Worcester RTA bus crashes into Auburn home; several people, including the driver, taken to hospital

A Worcester Regional Transit Authority bus crashed into a home this afternoon in Auburn, sending at leasdt eight people to area hospitals, including the driver, who suffered the worst injuries, officials said.

The bus was carrying three passengers when it struck the home at 24 Swanson Road at about 5 p.m., the Auburn Fire Department said in a statement.

Auburn Fire Chief Stephen M. Coleman Jr. said in a phone interview that the house moved 7 feet off its foundation, and that “the driver is the most seriously injured.” He said the man was taken to UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester with serious injuries.

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Coleman said it took rescuers one hour and 15 minutes to remove the driver from the bus.
“The extrication was very lengthy and complicated,” he said in a statement.

A mother and her three young children who were in the home at the time of the accident suffered minor injuries and were also taken to the hospital, according to Coleman. He did not have the children’s ages.

The three passengers were taken to St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester with minor injuries, Coleman said. The conditions of the injured parties were not immediately available.

The chief did not know the age of the driver and did not release his name. Coleman said he was not aware of any indication that drugs or alcohol were involved, and that police are investigating the cause of the accident.

Auburn Police Chief Andrew J. Sluckis Jr. said in an email late Monday that the injured tally had reached 10 people, two more than the Fire Department had initially reported.

It was not immediately clear whether the remaining two people out of the 10 who were hurt were on the bus or in the house at the time of the crash.

“The accident is under investigation and a test of the vehicles breaking system will be conducted tomorrow,’ Sluckis said.

A spokeswoman at a public relations firm retained by the transit authority could not be reached for comment.

The authority is the second largest regional transit authority in the state and services Worcester and 35 surrounding communities in Central Massachusetts, according to its website.