Massey Tunnel crash: TransLink bus driver feared for his life

A TransLink bus driver involved in a head-on collision with a SUV in the George Massey Tunnel last week says he didnt think he would come out of it alive.

Angelo Oliveros, 45, was driving the 620 bus when a swerving SUV slammed into his vehicle head-on

An SUV collided head-on with a TransLink bus in the George Massey Tunnel on July 4, when it swerved across lanes, setting it on a crash course with 35 bus passengers and driver Angelo Oliveros. (Carlos Moreira)

A TransLink bus driver involved in a head-on collision with an SUV in the George Massey Tunnel last week says he didnt think he would come out of it alive.

Father-of-three Angelo Oliveros, 45, was driving northbound in the Massey tunnel last Friday afternoon when a black SUV suddenly swerved into his lane.

Oliveros, who was driving a packed 620 Bridgeport Station​/Tsawwassen Ferry bus, found himself trapped in the tunnel, on a crash course with the SUV, with no place to go.

"He came along...Oh my God, then the next thing I know, I hit the brakes trying to avoid him and a head-on collision," Oliveros told the CBC.

"I closed my eyes and thought 'Oh my God, I am not going to make it'...I wasn't expecting to open my eyes again anymore."

Oliveros says he still doesn't know why the driver of the SUV suddenly swerved into his lane, but says his defensive driving training kicked in.

The SUV was severely damaged in the crash and the driver was taken to hospital with serious injuries. (Carlos Moreira)

With counterflow traffic barring his escape in one direction, he swung his bus, carrying 35 passengers, hard into the tunnel wall, minimizing the impact of the head on collision.

Oliveros is now at home recovering and when he's ready, he says he needs to drive through that tunnel again.

"Maybe one of these days, I'll take the Tsawwassen ferry bus and then try to overcome this fear right now that I am kind of having."

The driver of the black SUV was taken to hospital with serious injuries. There were no reports of injuries to the bus passengers.

The collision closed the tunnel's northbound route and resulted in serious traffic delays at rush hour and the rerouting of a number of buses.

The cause of the collision is still under investigation.

With files from Terry Donnelly.