MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) - A Megabus heading to Minneapolis from Chicago caught fire near Lake Forest on Sunday afternoon. No injuries were reported, but many passengers lost their luggage.
Officials said the bus sustained extensive damage, and the cause of the fire remains under investigation. The bus driver and about 40 passengers safely exited the bus before firefighters arrived, but the luggage did not.
“All my luggage is gone,” passenger Russicha Watkins told FOX 32. “When I heard the first boom I was in the bathroom. I came out to a lot of smoke and I couldn’t hardly get off the bus because it was full of black smoke. As I got off to catch my breath and started walking down the highway, the bus blew up again and fire came from everywhere.”
Minneapolis-bound Terry Griffin told FOX 32 he was moving from Chicago and lost all of his belongings.
“I lost everything. Me and my brother. My social security card, all my clothes, because I was trying to move, trying to start over,” Griffin said.
New York Times writer Lucas Peterson, also known as “The Frugal Traveler,” happened to be on the bus and tweeted live updates. Peterson said a University of St. Thomas student lost textbooks worth hundreds of dollars along with other personal belongings.
According to the company’s website, “Megabus assumes no liability for the loss of or damage of baggage in excess of $250, and then only to the extent of the actual loss or damage sustained, computed on the basis of the actual value of the baggage.”
Alexei O'Brien, student at U of St Thomas, says he lost his clothes, schoolwork, hundreds of $ in textbooks pic.twitter.com/Uzhpji2tUa— The Frugal Traveler (@frugaltraveler) February 21, 2016
What's left of the bus. pic.twitter.com/9nCdhHINLf— The Frugal Traveler (@frugaltraveler) February 21, 2016
Small fire over wheel becomes big; people abandon luggage and get away. Entire thing goes up in flames, series of loud booms.— The Frugal Traveler (@frugaltraveler) February 21, 2016