Woman Killed, Eight Injured in Downtown Crash Involving CTA Bus

One person was killed and eight others injured in a serious crash involving a Chicago Transit Authority bus during the Tuesday evening rush hour, officials said.

The fatality was a 51-year-old woman who died at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. She was identified as Aimee Coath of Flossmoor, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's office.

Eight others, including the bus driver, were hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries. 

The Route 148 Clarendon/Michigan Express bus was eastbound on Lake Street just before 6 p.m. when it collided with several other vehicles at North Michigan Avenue and East Lake Street. 

"[The bus] hit the curb and went up on the curb and slammed into a concrete wall," said witness Robert Kudd. "People were screaming and running towards the bus. The bus driver was hurt. The windshield of the bus was out."

At least 10 ambulances were called to the scene.

Kudd said one person who was pinned under the bus was removed with a white sheet covering them.

"It was a bad scene. Several cars were smashed," he said.

Evanston resident Julie Larkin works in the Michigan Plaza building near the site of the crash. She said she was in a first-floor CVS store when she heard a scream and then "horrible thuddy crash."

She ran outside to see the bus driver with his eyes closed, apparently unconscious. No one except for the driver was on the CTA bus at the time of the crash, according to fire officials and the CTA. Several people boarded the bus to check on the driver while Larkin called 911.

"I'll never forget that scream," she said.

The articulated bus came to rest on the sidewalk adjacent to a plaza at 205 N. Michigan Ave. The bus was removed from the scene shortly before 8:30 p.m.

Investigators were looking into what caused the crash, and were analyzing video footage from a camera on board that shows the interior of the bus, CTA spokesman Brian Steele said.

Parts of Michigan Avenue and Lake Street were closed to traffic for several hours. The CTA rerouted several buses around the crash scene.

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