Megabus driver cited for speeding in April 13 crash on I-65 that injured 19

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Nineteen people were injured when a Megabus crashed on I-65 near Edinburgh on the morning of April 13.

State Police said April 21 that following an inspection, no mechanical issues with the bus were found.

The driver was cited for speeding. Police also found that the bus had an incorrect USDOT number.

The left lane of the interstate was closed April 13for about three hours while crews cleaned up the crash.

It happened well before dawn. The Megabus slammed into the back of a semi trailer that had stopped for construction traffic.

A total of 63 passengers were on the bus, which was traveling from Chicago to Atlanta when it was involved in a crash with a semi-trailer at around 5:30 am. None of the injuries are life-threatening, but passengers say it was chaos as they scrambled for a way out of the wreck. Some were trapped in their seats and had to be rescued.

Ambulances rushed 19 injured passengers to five different hospitals, including an eight-year-old boy nearly thrown through the windshield. He was seated on the upper deck near Charles Patterson.

"When we got to the impact, he flew up. The glass was already broken. By the grace of God he wasn't out the window," said Patterson.

"I just heard a big ol' boom and everyone was like, 'No, no, no, no, no, no!'," recalled passenger Raejaea Joesha.

"My nephew actually flew down the aisle," added passenger Angelo Garth. "[It was] chaos."

IndyGo sent buses to pick up the remaining passengers on the bus and took them to a Whiteland truck stop where another Megabus picked them up.

Indiana State Police say southbound traffic had come to a stop due to construction vehicles in the area, and a state trooper with emergency lights on was assisting as the construction vehicles moved from the right lane to the median. According to State Police, the driver of the Megabus, 50-year-old Kimberly Lane of Dolten, Illinois, failed to stop for the slowed traffic. The Megabus rear-ended a semi in the left lane.

"I heard several people telling her to slow down," said Garth. "She was going really fast, from the time we took off to the time we crashed."

"I believe she didn't have enough time to brake," said passenger Kyla Williams.

The impact of the crash pushed the semi into a 2003 Chevy SUV, which then struck a 1999 Nissan. Both drivers are from Indianapolis. 

"I heard her say 'oops,'" said Francon Ivy, passenger. She said  the driver braked and tried to steer clear of the collision.

The front end of the Megabus and the back of the semi were both significantly damaged, and all of the vehicles involved had to be towed.

Nine patients were taken to Johnson Memorial Hospital; four were taken to Columbus Regional Hospital; three went to St. Francis; two went to Major Hospital and one was taken to Methodist.

An alcohol breath test on the Megabus driver was negative. The bus will undergo an inspection to determine if mechanical problems were a factor.

"Safety is our number one priority and Megabus is fully cooperating with the authorities with their investigation into the incident," said Megabus spokesman Sean Hughes in a prepared statement.

The backup was estimated at approximately four miles between Franklin and Edinburgh on I-65 southbound. 

Megabus sent buses to take passengers either back to Chicago or on to Atlanta. Most if not all of those hurt were expected to be released by the end of the day.

The eight-year-old did not have a mark on him. He's sore and had a headache and was looking forward to getting home.