December 1, 2013

Campus-to-Campus Bus Struck in NYC Accident

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While trying to park in front of the Cornell Club in Midtown Manhattan Saturday, a University Campus-to-Campus bus was struck by a vehicle that hit and killed a New York Police Department traffic agent.

NYPD Traffic Enforcement Agent Kalyanarat Ranasinghe, 71, was killed on-duty after being hit by a truck pulling out of a parking spot, the Associated Press reported.

After the initial accident, the driver’s truck collided with the Campus-to-Campus bus, one of many coach buses that offers transportation between Ithaca and New York City. The bus had been trying to parallel park in front of the Cornell Club on East 44th Street.

Ranasinghe was declared dead after the accident, which occurred at around 2:30 p.m., the Associated Press reported.

University Spokesperson John Carberry said that no one on the Campus-to-Campus bus was injured.

Passengers on the bus were informed of Ranasinghe’s death by police and were eventually moved to the lobby of the Cornell Club, according to Corey Ryan Earle ’07, associate director of student programs in the Office of Alumni Affairs and a passenger on the bus. Once there, passengers were questioned by the police before being allowed to leave.

Carberry said in a statement that the bus driver cooperated with authorities and remained on scene.

“The driver is not expected to be charged in connection with the accident, and Cornell University will continue to cooperate fully with local police as they investigate this tragic event,” Carberry said.

Police said that the investigation will continue. The 43-year-old truck driver has not been charged and remained on scene to cooperate with officials, the Associated Press reported.

Both the University and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg offered their thoughts and prayers to the family and friends of Ranasinghe.

“Every day, traffic enforcement agents play a critical role in making sure millions of New Yorkers can safely get to where they are going,” Bloomberg said in a statement. “On behalf of the entire city of New York, our thoughts and prayers are with the Ranasinghe family.”