UNION, NJ – A bus in the express lane of Rt. 78 east ignited into flames early Thursday morning, closing express lanes and causing traffic delays.

Union firefighters responded to the bus fire at mile marker 50.8 on Rt. 78 east at just before 7:00 a.m.  Upon arrival, said Union Fire Chief Mike Scanio, the bus was fully engulfed in flames, from the engine compartment to the rear passenger area.

State Police were on scene for traffic control. Scanio said State Police reported all occupants were off the bus.  Union’s Engine 2 arrived and stretched a foam line to extinguish the fire.  Firefighters from Ladder 1 used a saw to cut open the engine compartment to assist with access to the engine fire. 

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Scanio said hazmat personnel placed absorbent booms in the sewers and at a section of sewer on Allen Avenue.  Towing services removed the bus from the scene.

According to NJDOT, all express and local lanes have been reopened, but traffic delays remain.