Rats' Bus Crashes; Three Injured

This is breaking news. We'll keep you updated. From the Albany Times-Union:

Update: Members of River Rats injured when bus rolls

By CHRISTEN GOWAN, Staff writer 

Click byline for more stories by writer. 

Last updated: 8:18 a.m., Thursday, February 19, 2009

BECKET, Mass. - Three players and employees of the Albany River Rats were seriously injured this morning after their team bus slid in snow and rolled on the Massachusetts Turnpike just before 3:30 a.m., Massachusetts State Police said.

The injured people are a mix of players and team employees, River Rats coach Jeff Daniels said, but declined to identify any of them until families can be contacted.

Police describe the injures as serious, but Daniels said they did not appear to be life threatening.

"We were very fortunate and lucky," Daniels said.

Daniels said the bus rolled after hitting bad weather on a return trip from Lowell. It struck a guardrail, coming to rest on its side and partially on the highway. The discovery of the disabled bus prompted other motorists to stop their vehicles on the highway and then try to slow approaching traffic, Daniels said.

Some seriously injured suffered lacerations during the accident.

Everybody on the bus was taken to Berkshire Medical Center. Four people were admitted for treatment and all aboard were being checked out by medical staff as a precaution.

"They've been great looking after us," Daniels said.

The bus was heading back to Albany after playing in Lowell, Mass. Wednesday night. It overturned just east of Lee.

The coach and the rest of the team are still at the hospital this morning.

More here from the Daily Gazette's Phil Janack.

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