Firefighters see powerful equipment delicately move a school bus

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 19 August 2015 at 12:00 am

Photos by Tom Rivers

MEDINA – Firefighters from Orleans and Genesee counties witnessed a powerful “rotator” move a school bus that was tipped within inches of a crushed car.

Rusiniak’s Service in Buffalo brought the machine with a 360-degree boom. It can grab vehicles that weigh up to 115,000 pounds and swing them out of the way so rescue personnel can work on patients or free trapped people in a vehicle.

Rusiniak’s did the demonstration at Lyons Collision in Medina, and used a mini crane to move the bus.

Jeff Lyons of Lyons Collision said the “rotator” is a great asset to help firefighters.

“You can work off the side of a scene,” Lyons said. “You don’t have to back up and be directly behind the vehicle. It’s amazing to me that you can pick up that much weight and swing it around.”

The rotator has no trouble lifting a 25,000-pound school bus.

Dave Czumaj, right, of Rusiniak’s controls the crane. It can gently and precisely move massive weight at a scene. Jeff Lyons is at center. He said Lyons Collision and Rusiniak’s work together on some calls.

Cory Vercruysse of Lyons, right, helps guide the school bus while it is moved away from the car. Rusiniak’s does many demonstrations for firefighters in Western New York, showing the “rotator” in action.

The school bus is close to being set down on the other side of the rotator.

Barre firefighters Karl Driesel (left), Pat Lamka, and his daughter Sarah Lamka were among the firefighters to see the demonstration.

After the demo, firefighters worked on extrication drills on some of the vehicles at Lyons.