Coventry & Warwickshire

Coventry bus crash: Two dead after double-decker hits supermarket

Media captionSupt Paul Keasey appealed for witnesses to the crash to contact police

An eight-year-old boy and a woman thought to be in her 70s have died after a double-decker bus crashed into a supermarket in Coventry city centre, West Midlands Police have said.

The boy, a passenger on the top deck of the bus, and the woman, a pedestrian, both died at the scene.

A nine-year-old girl is also seriously ill in hospital, while six others, including the bus driver, were hurt.

The bus collided with stationary cars before hitting the Sainsbury's store.

Police have not commented on what caused the crash, which happened in Trinity Street at about 18:00 BST on Saturday.

A number of people were trapped on the bus's top deck, police added.

Specialist officers are supporting the families of the boy, from Leamington, and the woman, from Nuneaton.

Image copyright @Haroon_Mota/PA
Image caption The bus had been travelling to Leamington when it crashed into the city centre store

A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said the nine-year-old girl had injuries to her face, head and right leg and suspected chest, abdominal and pelvic injuries. She remains in a critical but stable condition at Birmingham Children's Hospital.

Five people were treated at University Hospital Coventry and Warwickshire - the bus driver, a man in his 50s, with neck and shoulder injuries; a man in his 20s with a broken arm; a man with a minor leg injury; a woman in her 60s with leg and arm injuries, and a man with a minor injury. Another person was treated at the scene.

All but one of the five have been discharged from hospital.

Stagecoach Midlands said the bus was on the X18 service from Coventry to Leamington.

Road closures were put in place after the crash while police carried out investigations but have now been lifted.

Police Supt Paul Keasey said: "We hope to carry out a swift investigation and I would like to thank people who have already come forward who witnessed the collision.

"This is a busy area of Coventry city centre and we hope to keep disruption to a minimum as our investigation continues; no-one has been arrested at this stage."

Witness Maneer Fiaz told the BBC he had heard a loud bang and then saw people running towards the scene.

"Everyone was just screaming and there were two kids trapped at the top of the vehicle," he said.

"It was just absolute chaos."

Bus 'skidded'

Another witness, Anand Basi, said: "People on the bottom deck seemed to be able to get out of the emergency door.

"But people on the top deck seemed to be trapped... It was chaos, everybody moving around, shouting, screaming, crying."

He added that the crash had taken place on a straight stretch of road and there appeared to be no obvious reason why the bus "skidded out of control".

A Sainsbury's spokeswoman said: "I can confirm that earlier this evening a bus mounted the pavement in Trinity Place, stopping when it made contact with the store.

"We can confirm that we have no colleagues injured. We are working on the ground with the emergency services."

The spokeswoman confirmed the store had been open at the time of the crash but was unable to say whether any customers had been injured.