Pennsylvania team bus crashes; pregnant coach among dead

Posted at 4:42 PM, Mar 16, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-16 16:42:29-04

(CNN) — The pregnant coach of Seton Hill University women’s lacrosse team was among two people killed Saturday when the bus they were on veered off the highway and crashed into a tree in southern Pennsylvania, authorities said.

Kristina Quigley, 30, who was six months pregnant, died from injuries at Penn State Hershey Medical Center, according to the Cumberland County Department of Public Safety.

“Her unborn child did not survive,” the county agency said.

The 61-year-old bus driver, Anthony Guaetta, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The bus was carrying 23 people, who were players or associated with team, when it crashed, authorities said. Other passengers are being treated at a nearby hospital for minor to major injuries, said Megan Silverstrim, a spokeswoman for Cumberland County public safety.

The bus was traveling eastbound on the Pennsylvania Turnpike near Carlisle when it veered off the road, struck a guard rail, traveled 70 yards through grass and then struck a tree, said Trooper Rob Hicks, a spokesman for state police.

Police received a 911 call about the accident at 8:50 a.m., and about an hour later all victims had been removed from the scene, authorities said.

Silverstrim wasn’t sure where the bus was headed, but the lacrosse team had a 1 p.m. match against Millersville University in Millersville, Pennsylvania, according to both teams’ schedules.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved in this morning’s bus accident,” the university said on its Twitter page.

Seton Hill is a Catholic university in Greensburg, outside Pittsburgh. It was founded by the Sisters of Charity in 1885.

The bus was owned and operated by Pennsylvania-based Mlaker Transportation, which issued a statement Saturday saying it “is cooperating fully with police, officials from Seton Hill University and others to assist the student-athletes, coaches and others on the motorcoach.”

The company said its been in operation for more than 40 years and “places the safe transportation of all our passengers at the highest level.”

The accident was still under investigation Saturday afternoon, a state police spokesman said.

The National Safety Transportation Board is gathering information but has yet to decide whether it will investigate, said spokesman Keith Holloway.

In an unrelated incident last month, a bus carrying the University of Maine women’s basketball team crashed on a highway near Boston, but no one was killed, CNN affiliate WCVB reported. The bus crossed the median and traveled into the woods next to the highway, authorities told WCVB.