Shalaney Velasquez, Faith Patolo-Vitale and Lisa Aitoa are fighting for their lives. Picture: Instagram
Shalaney Velasquez, Faith Patolo-Vitale and Lisa Aitoa are fighting for their lives. Picture: Instagram

Three teens fighting for life after freak bus crash

THREE teenagers are critically injured in hospital after a freak crash where their hatchback smashed into a broken down coach in Sydney's southwest.

The red Mazda was travelling east on the M5 when it crashed into the back of the bus in a breakdown lane at 6.25pm on Sunday.

Three women are critical after a car crashed into the back of a bus. Picture: Damian Shaw
Three women are critical after a car crashed into the back of a bus. Picture: Damian Shaw


The Murrays coach was empty and its driver was not injured. Police are investigating whether the accident was caused by driver distraction or mechanical fault.

The Mazda's 19-year-old female driver, Faith Patolo-Vitale, and one of the two back seats passengers were trapped in the car for a short time before emergency services managed to cut them out of the vehicle.

 

Ms Patolo-Vitale's brother, Aliamanu Patolo-Vitale, 18, was sitting in the front seat of the car. He was assessed by paramedics before being taken to St George Hospital with his older sister.

Back seat passengers Shalaney Velasquez, 19, and Lisa Aitoa, 18, sustained severe injuries when the car hit the rear of the coach.

Both of the women were taken to Liverpool Hospital where they are fighting for their lives.

Staff at Liverpool Hospital told The Daily Telegraph both women were in critical conditions last night.

The driver of the bus was uninjured. Picture: Damian Shaw
The driver of the bus was uninjured. Picture: Damian Shaw

Liverpool Hospital surgeons spent most of Easter Sunday night operating on Ms Velasquez and Ms Aitoa, while Ms Patolo-Vitale underwent surgery at St George Hospital.

Mr Patolo-Vitale was in a serious but stable condition at St George Hospital last night.

In the hours before the crash, Ms Patolo-Vitale, Ms Velasquez and Ms Aitoa had played beach volleyball with their friends.

In a video posted on social media, the trio were filmed laughing and joking in Sydney's southwest.

The car, carrying three women and a man, hit the back of the bus in a breakdown lane. Picture: Damian Shaw
The car, carrying three women and a man, hit the back of the bus in a breakdown lane. Picture: Damian Shaw

Metropolitan Crash Unit investigators scoured a lengthy crime scene along the M5 from Belmore to King Georges roads.

The crash came as police cracked down on dangerous driving during the Easter break.

Officers targeted speeding, mobile phone use, seatbelt and motorcycle offences, during the double demerit period on the long weekend.

Chief Inspector Phil Brooks said three lives were lost in NSW over the Easter long weekend



Iconic CQ buildings helps artist clear haze of depression

premium_icon Iconic CQ buildings helps artist clear haze of depression

He finished work, quit his pilot licence and put his brush down.

COURT LIST: 52 people, crane company facing Magistrate today

premium_icon COURT LIST: 52 people, crane company facing Magistrate today

See the full list of names on today's court list

Rocky Council dangles mystery 'carrot' for new Adani workers

premium_icon Rocky Council dangles mystery 'carrot' for new Adani workers

Packages to encourage miners to make the move to Beef Capital