Bus crash passengers ‘lucky’ to escape

Published Monday, 22 April 2013
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One of the first people on the scene after a double decker bus overturned in Co Down has told UTV that it is a miracle more people weren't injured.

Bus crash passengers ‘lucky’ to escape
The overturned bus near Lisburn. (© Pacemaker)

The bus was carrying 60 wedding guests when the private hire vehicle toppled into a field off the Ballynahinch Road, near Lisburn, on Saturday afternoon.

Although 14 people were taken to hospital, no-one was seriously hurt and all patients have now been discharged.

David McAuley and his son came across the incident, and quickly helped some of the passengers off the bus. He admitted that he "expected to see the worst."

"We are not normally on that road - but we were on that road for a reason. We came on the accident and saw that the bus had tipped in," he explained, adding that he did not realise how many people were onboard.

Mr McAuley said that he was afraid about what scenes would meet him when he looked into the bus.

"It could have been an awful tragedy.

"Unbelievable. They'll never be as lucky in their lives, those people," he said.

Eleven ambulance vehicles along with a doctor and ambulance officers were called to the scene, arriving within minutes.

Patients were taken to Lagan Valley Hospital and the Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast for treatment to non-life threatening injuries.

Another 46 people were checked out at the scene.

John McPoland, the NI Ambulance Services' communications manager, said that it was through the grace of God that no-one was seriously hurt.

He said when they heard a bus full of passengers had overturned, they were "very apprehensive and concerned" about what crews might find at the scene.

Mr McPoland said the passengers were "extremely lucky" that there were no serious injuries or fatalities.

Despite the crash, the wedding reception later went ahead and the bride and groom are now on honeymoon.

Meanwhile, the investigation into the collision is continuing. Police are appealing for anyone who witnessed the incident to get in touch.

© UTV News
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