Safety concerns after school bus is involved in crash in West Wittering - 'This should be a wake up call'

"If there had been kids upstairs, they would have been showered with broken glass."

Those were the words of a West Wittering resident following a crash near his home, involving a double-decker school bus, at around 4pm on Tuesday (November 10).

Stagecoach South confirmed one of its buses collided with a tree branch, 'resulting in damage to two upper deck windows', whilst trying to pass by a lorry, travelling in the opposite direction, on Piggery Hall Lane.

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“One passenger was on board at the time, sitting downstairs and no one was injured," a spokesperson said.

Chris Hardy said he has been living alongside the road for more than a year and the previous owner of his house 'also complained' about the speeds and the overgrown vegetation

"Safety is our absolute priority, and we are investigating the cause of the incident."

Piggery Hall resident Chris Hardy said it was the first incident of this nature, that he knew of, but 'there has always been potential'.

"It's a 40mph speed limit [but] there are trees and bushes right up to the edges of the road," he said. "It means vehicles can't see round the corner. They can't see what's coming.

"Two windows on the top deck of the bus were smashed by roadside tree branches.

West Sussex County Council said it would 'look at any concerns regarding overhanging vegetation' and establish 'what action needs to be taken'

"This could have been a very serious accident with children being killed."

Mr Hardy said he has been living alongside the road for more than a year and the previous owner of his house 'also complained' about the speeds and the overgrown vegetation on the roadside.

He added: "This incident should be a wake up call.

"I had to sweep the glass out of the road as a car could have got a puncture. It's on a bend so that could have been very dangerous."

West Sussex County Council said it was 'concerned to hear about any accident' as it takes road safety 'very seriously'.

A spokesperson said: "We will talk to the bus company to establish the facts about what happened and look at any concerns regarding overhanging vegetation, establish who owns the trees, and what action needs to be taken.

“Residents can apply for speed limit reductions but any application would have to be assessed against county council policy, which has been derived from Department for Transport guidance and is supported by the police. This is to ensure a consistent approach at a county and national level.”