Cat in a hot pink cone (Instagram/@bookczuk)

SEPTA suffers four bus and trolley crashes in one week

Update, July 28: On Thursday night, another crash. An out-of-service trolley slammed into a historic house in Southwest Philadelphia, SEPTA COO Scott Sauer confirmed to 6ABC. Only a maintenance mechanic was on board. He reportedly did suffer minor injuries, but the woman inside the home, known as Blue Bell Tavern, was unharmed. This is the now the fifth crash in a week.

When a Route 31 bus jumped the curb at 15th and Walnut streets Tuesday night, it marked the fourth SEPTA bus or trolley crash in a single week. The incidents all occurred in different neighborhoods, resulting in one death and injuring dozens more. 

SEPTA officials maintain the spate is an “unfortunate coincidence,” but say they’re boosting training. BP deputy editor Heather Chin recaps the crashes and what we know.

The front of the Route 14 bus after it rammed into another SEPTA bus on Roosevelt Boulevard on July 21, 2023. (6ABC)

Is it really that hard to play sports in Philadelphia?

In recent years, players traded to the Phillies have disappointed in their first season here. And it’s become a mantra for them or their coaches to say something like, “Well, Philly takes getting used to.” 

Baloney, say the Hittin’ Season hosts. Fans expecting star players to perform doesn’t make Philadelphia an outlier — that’s called pro sports. (Yes, Trea Turner, we’re talking to you.)

Philadelphia Phillies’ Trea Turner looks on after striking out during the baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles, Tuesday, July 25, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)

RECAP: What else happened?

$ = paywalled

• Legalizing recreational marijuana — which continues to gain momentum in Pa. — could net the commonwealth $400 million to $1 billion annually in tax revenue, per a new estimate from the Independent Fiscal Office. [Billy Penn/WITF]

• Despite a high demand for housing and loads of vacant office space, a wave of residential conversions in Center City is unlikely, experts say. Philly already has a ton of new apartments, for one, and the cost of converting a building can be nearly as pricey as starting anew. [Inquirer$]

• 13 local organizations are getting $250k to advance health equity, thanks to the Philadelphia City Fund — its first grant awards since a rebranding and overhaul. [Billy Penn]

• Owners of Bankroll, the $25 million luxury sports bar in Center City that spectacularly collapsed four months after opening, appear to have thrown in the towel. They’re looking for a buyer and auctioning off the liquor license, kitchen equipment, and decor. [Billy Penn/Inquirer$]

• Jalen Hurts twice turned down the opportunity to participate in Netflix’s popular “Quarterback” docuseries, like some other QBs less thrilled with the idea of having cameras hovering over their every move. [@Jeff_McLane/USA Today]

• Philly has the second-largest population of Liberian immigrants in the U.S., and pride is on full display this week as they celebrate their nation’s independence day. [Billy Penn]

• Yes, that was a racoon skittering around the baggage claim carousel at PHL Airport this week. [@TaRhondaThomas/6ABC]


Nothing public for Mayor Kenney this week. His administration did announce that next Thursday, the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy will present designs from the five semi-finalists for the city’s new Harriet Tubman statue.


💃🏽 Dancers of all levels, Philadelphia Dance Day is here! Group lessons in Zumba, Cuban rumba, hip hop cardio, ballet, lindy hop, house party fitness, and more are available with free RSVP. (10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 29)

🚚 A family-friendly food truck festival takes over the parking lot behind the South Philly Walmart, with carnival games and bouncy houses, and proceeds benefiting kids with autism. (12 to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, July 29-30)

📖 Billy Penn is proud to headline the inaugural Philly Story Fest, joining journalists from media outlets around Philadelphia to tell the city’s best stories on stage at the Bok. Early bird tix are $17. (7 to 10 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5)