By Ben Fractenberg and Nicole Bode
UPPER EAST SIDE – A group of third graders on a field trip to Lincoln Center Friday morning got a trip to the hospital instead after the bus driver hit the brakes to avoid a collison with another vehicle, officials said.
Eleven of the 24 students aboard the bus were taken to New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center for observation and later released, according to officials from the Fire Department and the Department of Education. The rest were sent back to their school, P.S. 149 in Brooklyn, officials said. The parents were notified, Education Department spokeswoman Marjorie Feinberg said.
The bus, which is operated by Boro Transit Inc. in Brooklyn, was heading westbound on East 63rd Street between First and Second Avenue when another vehicle apparently cut it off, prompting the bus driver to slam on the brakes, an NYPD spokesman said.
The children, who are all between the ages of 9 - 10 years old, got "bumps and bruises," as a result of the 11 a.m. incident, said Steven Morelly, deputy chief of EMS command.
A representative of the bus company declined comment. Earlier reports from the FDNY and the Education Department described the incident as a collision or a "fender bender." Originally all 24 of the students aboard were believed to have suffered minor injuries, but only 11 were transported to the hospital.
Three adults who were on the bus were treated at the scene, Morelly added.
Witness Antonio Arcamone, 23, an elevator technician from Queens, was driving in a pick up truck behind the bus when it stopped short.
He said he didn't see any serious damage, but added, "I guess they’re being precautious because it’s children.”