Glasgow & West Scotland

Helper describes 'horrific' bus crash which saw 29 taken to hospital

The crash scene
Image caption Casualties were being treated at the scene of the crash on the A814 sliproad

A woman who was one of the first to help at a serious bus crash in Glasgow says the scene was "horrific".

A single-decker First Bus mounted the embankment on a slip road off the Clydeside Expressway at about 19:00 on Sunday evening.

Police confirmed a total of 29 people needed hospital treatment after the incident on the A814 sliproad.

Three people are in a "serious but stable" condition, 12 have been released and 17 remain in hospital.

First Bus confirmed that the driver and an off-duty driver travelling home on the bus had suffered broken bones and that the driver was one of those in a "serious but stable" condition.

Former bus driver Sylvia Barr was driving behind the bus with her children and rushed over to help.

'Mangled seats'

She told the BBC Scotland news website that her training kicked in, sending her to find the emergency exit and help the walking wounded off the bus.

Ms Barr, 49, said the biggest fear when the accident happened was if the bus was going to topple over.

She said; "It was surreal. I worked for another bus company and my training taught me to get any mobile passengers off of the vehicle.

"People were trying to get into the bus, trying to pull the window out from outside of the bus.

"I was a wee bit scared that the bus might fall on top of them, so I went up the embankment and opened the emergency exit."

Image caption Police said the bus left the road on a bend in the sliproad and went up an embankment

She described described the scene inside the bus as "carnage".

"People were trapped in the mangled seats with other people lying on top of them, mostly head and facial injuries," she said.

"People were trapped in the little single seats, there was a man lying across the floor.

"There was one woman mobile, near the exit. She was startled and dazed and and I helped her out.

"She was on the bus with her two sisters, coming home from a day trip to the Kiltwalk at Balloch.

"I went back to check on her sisters, one had a head injury and was unable to get up, the other was trapped in the chair, bent forwards, the chair seemed twisted, this woman, had a serious leg or hip injury, her leg was caught in the chair behind her, but she was conscious."

Ms Barr said the emergency services were fast to arrive and take control.

"They were brilliant and had it organised and under control in no time," she added.

Image copyright Sylvia Barr
Image caption Sylvia Barr said "people came from everywhere" to help the injured passengers

Ms Barr was at the scene for about two hours. All the cars who had stopped behind had to reverse off the slip road.

Ambulance, fire and police crews treated casualties at the scene and the sliproad road was closed until about 05:15 on Monday.

Inspector Darren Faulds is leading the crash investigation.

He said: "After officers arrived at the scene, they spoke to 28 passengers and the driver of the bus.

"Our investigation is continuing today into the cause of the crash. The bus involved will be fully examined and officers are gathering and studying CCTV footage from the area to assist with their inquiry."

'Swift response'

Andrew Jarvis, managing director for First Glasgow said: "On behalf of everyone at First Glasgow we would like to wish everyone involved in this incident a speedy recovery. An investigation between Police Scotland and the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is now under way to establish the cause of the accident.

"The vehicle has now been recovered from the crash site and is under the control of Police Scotland pending investigation and we will continue to assist the authorities with any information and help they require regarding the incident. 

"I would again like to pay tribute to the emergency services for their handling of this incident and the swift response. We had two members of staff on board, the driver and an off-duty driver making his way home.

"Unfortunately, both sustained serious injuries. The driver of the bus is, however, now in a serious, but stable condition. Both sustained broken bones, cuts and bruises and will remain hospitalised due to their injuries.

"Our thoughts remain with anyone injured in the accident and we hope for a speedy recovery. "

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