A 16-year-old boy died in a most unusual and horrific way while traveling to a Sweet 16 party on a party bus yesterday. The visual is terrible, so be warned. The teen had stuck his head out of the emergency hatch in the ceiling of the bus just as the vehicle approached an overpass as the bus crossed the George Washington Bridge from New York to New Jersey. You can imagine the rest, but hopefully your mind has stopped before you finish that thought. No way is a good way for a child to die, but this is especially awful because of all the "if onlys" involved here.
If only the kids hadn't been dancing, making the temperature on the bus hot.
If only the security guard who was on the bus and had been telling the kids to stop playing with the hatches hadn't left his seat at that exact minute to tell the driver to adjust the temperature of the bus.
If only the bus wasn't approaching the exact spot of the overpass at the time.
If only the hatch wouldn't open.
If only the double-decker bus hadn't been too hot.
If only Daniel Fernandez hadn't tried to open the hatch.
If only ... it's what we always say when anything horrible happens that seems to have no explanation, purpose or meaning and we desperately seek answers when there aren't any. Even though the bus company says it's going to launch an "internal investigation" to cover their bases, it doesn't seem like anyone is to blame. Just one of those things, kids being kids, and sometimes the price to pay for that is anything but fair.
Image via Susan NYC/Flickr