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Bus crash driver praised
BUS passengers, including a pregnant woman and her toddler son, were involved in a crash on the A345 on Wednesday.
Several people were injured when the Wilts & Dorset’s Salisbury Reds X5 service and a car collided at the junction of Down Barn Road, which leads to the Winterbourne Valley.
Jasmine Harris, 22, was on the top deck when the accident happened.
“We were on our way from Amesbury to Salisbury when suddenly the bus swerved and there was a massive bang,” she said.
“Everyone was shouting and screaming - people were panicking.
“I was sitting about half way up the bus and got thrown forwards to the front and bumped into the seats.”
Miss Harris was sitting next to her friend Emily Stockwell, who is 30 weeks pregnant and had her one-year-old son Karlton on her lap.
“My first thought was for keeping Emily and Karlton safe,” she said. “Luckily her baby is ok but it was very frightening.”
The crash happened at 11.25am last Wednesday morning when the grey Mercedes C220 and the bus collided on the busy main road.
There were between 20 and 30 people on board the bus at the time.
“I think the bus driver did a brilliant job of controlling the bus,” added Miss Harris. “It felt like it might tip over onto its side but he stopped that happening.
“He managed to control it so we could get to the side of the road, and helped everybody get off.”
Two people were taken to hospital suffering from minor injuries and whiplash. Several others were treated at the scene for bumps and bruises.
The driver of the car escaped serious injury.
“It was only once I got home that I realised my back was really hurting and how shaken up I was,” said Miss Harris.
“It happened very quickly but was a horrible shock. I think we had a lucky escape; it could have been so much worse.”
The road was closed until 12.45pm while the damaged vehicles were removed and a replacement bus was sent to rescue the stranded passengers who waited at the side of the road.
Andrew Wickham, managing director of Salisbury Reds, said the company’s thoughts are with the injured passengers and he hopes everyone will have “a fast and full recovery”.
“We have received praise for our driver from other passengers who were aboard the X5 at the time,” he said. “We will supply CCTV data to help the police with their investigation into the accident. We are just pleased that so many of our passengers were uninjured.”
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