A West Tisbury man was arrested and charged with operating under the influence of alcohol on Sunday after he reportedly drove his vehicle into the back of a Martha’s Vineyard Transit Authority bus that had stopped to let off passengers on Beach Road in Oak Bluffs.
Nelson Tuck, 27, was charged with operating under the influence and several other motor vehicle charges after he reportedly drove a BMW M5 sedan into the back of the bus just before 3:40 p.m. The transit authority bus was nearly full of passengers and had just made a drop-off in front of Lola’s Southern Seafood at the time of the crash.
Evidence gathered at the scene suggests the operator did not apply the brakes before crashing into the rear of the bus, police said.
Five people were taken to Martha’s Vineyard Hospital to be treated for injuries, including two passengers in the BMW, who were both placed on back boards and in neck braces before being placed in an ambulance.
Oak Bluffs Lieut. Timothy Williamson said Mr. Tuck initially claimed he was not driving the vehicle at the time of the crash and suggested the driver left the scene to look for help. But after checking with several nearby establishments to see if anyone had come in to use the phone — which they hadn’t — police began to doubt the story.
“We believe Mr. Tuck was driving at the time of the crash,” the lieutenant said.
One woman at the scene who did not identify herself said the crash startled the passengers.
“We were stopped to let the people off [the bus] when we heard this big boom,” she said. “It was scary.”
Traffic along Beach Road was shut down for at least an hour as emergency responders worked to secure the people injured in the crash and clear the roadway.