Belmar, NJ Public Service Bus Crashes, Aug 1957


Wall Township, N.J. (AP) -- A Public Service bus bound from Atlantic City to New York blew a tire and smashed into a Garden State Parkway abutment here yesterday, killing four persons and injuring 30 others.
The huge vehicle, traveling 50 miles per hour when the blowout occurred, skidded for 100 yards and smashed into the concrete barrier with such force that the bus roof was peeled back to the fourth seat.
Rescue crews used acetylene torches to free five of the injured.
Three passengers were deadon arrival at Fitkin Memorial Hospital, Neptune. A fourth died at the hospital some hours later.
None of the dead had been positively identified.
The accident, most serious on the superhighway since it opened in 1954, occurred in the West Belmar section where Route 38 passes over the parkway. It came at a time when thousands of weekenders were returning home from the shore.
The crash scene was one of broken bodies and scattered luggage. As rescue workers swarmed to the area, traffic was backed up for miles both on the parkway and on Route 38.
The driver, LESTER HOOKER, 35, and four other persons had to be cut free from the front of the smashed bus. Two of the five were among the dead, HOOKER and the other two among the injured.

Chester Times Pennsylvania 1957-08-19


Belmar, NJ Public Service Bus Crashes, Aug 1957

I was a member of the Spring Lake First Aid & Emergency Squad responding to that terrible accident.
I went right to the front left side of the bus and attempted to gain access through a window.
When I looked in there was a little old lady hanging from the luggage rack above her seat, where she was ejected on the impact of the crash and presumed deceased.
Many went to the hospital with serious injuries.
That was about the worse accident I have ever witnessed.
I will never forget that day.