Fatal School Bus Crash; Mass Casualty Tragedy

(TheRedAlertNews.com) – There has been a horrific tragedy involving a bus taking high school marching band students to a band camp.

Specifically, a charter bus transporting high school students to a band camp suffered a tragic accident, going off the road of a New York highway and tumbling down an embankment.

Local authorities confirmed the accident resulted in the death of two adults and severe injuries to several students.

The students on the bus were from Farmingdale High School, traveling as part of the school’s marching band, color guard, and dancers.

They chartered six buses for their journey from Long Island to a band camp in northeastern Pennsylvania.

The tragedy happened when they were just 30 minutes from their final destination, approximately 45 miles northwest of New York City.

The fatalities from the crash were Gina Pellettiere, 43, the school’s band director from Massapequa, and Beatrice Ferrari, 77, a retired teacher from Farmingdale.

State police reports indicated that, out of the 44 students on the bus, five were hospitalized in critical condition.

A Farmingdale student, Anthony Eugenio, 15, was sleeping at the time of the accident. He recalled waking up to a loud thud and chaotic tumbling. “Then everyone was yelling,” he said. “The kid next to me was covered in blood. I saw blood everywhere.”

In a statement outside the state police department, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul referred to the tragic event as a “day of terror,” elaborating that the bus had fallen 50 feet.

“Imagine the fear, the screams, the aftermath,” Hochul said. She also noted that early investigations suggest a likely faulty front tire may have contributed to the incident. However, she stressed, “While it’s preliminary, it is likely that a faulty front tire contributed to the accident although, again, this is still under investigation.”

CBS New York reported on Friday morning that the National Transportation Safety Board has initiated a federal investigation to explore the circumstances and causes of the crash in more detail.