A dozen people were taken to hospital after two city buses collided on the Transitway in the west end during the afternoon rush hour Tuesday.
“We were bouncing around, people were screaming,” said 30-year-old Melissa, from Kanata.
“I was sitting down, so I didn’t see what was going on.”
Melissa works downtown and didn’t want her last name published.
She was riding OC Transpo Route 61 and said the crash happened around 4:30 near an access point where buses exit Tunney’s Pasture station to get onto the Transitway.
“So a bus was coming, I guess from there, hit (our bus) as we were driving by, hit the middle of our bus, which sent us flying into the opposite side of the road and we clipped another bus at that point,” she said.
She praised the skill of the bus driver, who steered the bus into the wall to prevent a more serious collision.
It’s believed the other bus was a No. 98.
Melissa’s bus, she said, was “jam-packed” and it was “better for the people who were standing that it was so full, because they just kind of bounced off each other … so no one really went flying.”
Ottawa police couldn’t confirm how many passengers were on both buses.
“As soon as everything stopped, everyone was asking if everyone was OK. There was one girl in front of me, her head was bleeding so we were cleaning her up and someone had a Band-Aid,” Melissa said.
“Everyone was pretty calm with what was going on ‘cause I think everyone wasn’t too badly hurt.”
Paramedics treated 11 passengers and a driver for minor back, shoulder, arm or leg injuries.
One person was seen being strapped to a stretcher shortly after the crash.
Paramedic spokesman J.P. Trottier said a few passengers were treated at the scene and released.
Ottawa fire crews were also there but “there was no extrication required,” spokesman Marc Messier said.
The crash caused a backup of buses as emergency vehicles blocked off the Transitway.
One bus, facing the wrong way in the eastbound lane, had obvious damage to the front driver’s side.
“The OC Transpo supervisor and the police were saying they’ve never seen accident like this with OC Transpo, never seen a bus hit another bus like this. He literally drove into the side of the bus. I don’t know what he was thinking, or she was thinking,” said Melissa, who is “sore and stiff” but otherwise fine.
Ottawa police are investigating.