Driver's leg broken, building, home damaged in Walnut Hills Metro bus accident

CINCINNATI -- A Cincinnati Metro bus driver has a broken leg after she crashed into the side of a building in Walnut Hills Wednesday evening, in a crash neighbors say was unbelievable to watch.

Witness Ernest Jenkins saw the accident unfold as he was taking out trash from his store. He said the incident involved two collisions, which began at about 6 p.m., when an SUV traveling on Chapel St. suddenly pulled in front of a car.

According to Jenkins, the SUV ran the stoplight at Chapel and Gilbert.

"The white van (SUV) ... tried to pull out of Chapel real quick, and as he pulled out of there, he was trying to avoid the little gray car," Jenkins said. "She (the bus driver) hit him (driver of SUV), he spun around."

Watch Jenkins' animated comments in the video player above. 

The bus driver was thrown from her seat upon impact with the SUV, but the bus proceeded back onto Gilbert, heading north.

Jenkins said, "Before she crossed that center yellow line, she was on the floor."

"The driver then lost control of the vehicle, hit one building, ricocheted off, then hit another building across the intersection," Jenkins said. "When she tore off and hit that, I though she was a goner."

The out of control bus finally came to a final stop when it crashed into a home in the next block, at Gilbert and Lincoln.

"She was screaming and we kept trying to tell people 'don't move her,'" Jenkins said. "I mean she was screaming and what I did was look around the bus to see if I smelled any gas leaks."

The home's foundation was damaged, and was being checked to make sure it didn't shift.

The crash ripped the overhead door off the side of the first building hit, along with the awning that secured the door. The garage door was torn away and was dragged down the street.

"At this time of day as busy as this street is," Fire Chief Greg Potter said, "She crossed over the yellow line, hit this building, crossed over and didn't hit another car to me, is amazing."

The driver had just finished her shift and was headed back to the Metro garage when the accident occurred. A spokesperson for Metro said the driver was not wearing a safety belt, but the law doesn't require it.

The driver started working for Metro in 2005. Her name was not released.

No one else involved was injured.

Police said the driver of the SUV could be cited for running the stoplight; other charges could follow.


​(WCPO reporter Amy Wadas contributed to this report.)