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Woman’s death after being hit by bus accidental, inquest finds

PUBLISHED: 14:49 20 February 2020 | UPDATED: 15:26 20 February 2020

Police on the scene of a collision between a woman and a bus on Rose Lane in Norwich in August 2019.Picture: Neil Perry

Police on the scene of a collision between a woman and a bus on Rose Lane in Norwich in August 2019.Picture: Neil Perry

Archant

A bus driver did not have enough time to react to avoid a collision when a 79-year-old woman stepped out in front of his vehicle in Norwich city centre, an inquest has heard.

Janet Bagley, a retired clerical worker from Coleby, in Lincolnshire, died on August 8, 2019, after she was involved in a collision with a bus on Rose Lane.

She was pronounced dead at the scene.

At an inquest into her death held at Norfolk Coroner's Court, on Thursday, the court heard written evidence from members of Mrs Bagley's family who had been with her at the time of the collision, the driver of the bus, a cyclist and police officers who investigated the collision.

The court heard how on the night of August 8, Mrs Bagley was walking along Rose Lane with other members of her family who were all visiting Norwich.

Susan Sunley, one of Mrs Bagley's daughters, said: "As we were walking we started to spread out, I remember a cyclist passing me, I looked right and then heard a loud bang."

Adam Gallant, the bus driver, told the court how on August 8 he had departed the railway station at 9.45pm and followed a cyclist from Prince of Wales Road onto Rose Lane.

He said: "I know the road very well having travelled the route multiple times. As I passed the cyclist and group of pedestrians I performed a mirror check as I did this I heard a bang and then scraping so I bought the bus to a stop as quickly as I could."

Mr Gallant said he was not immediately sure what had happened but was informed by a woman that he had hit a female pedestrian.

"I can say at no point did I see the lady, I believe she must have been in the blind spot of the bus... I do not believe there was anything I could have done to avoid the collision and it has had a devastating affect on my life and my career," he said.

PC Forbes Scott, from Norfolk Constabulary who carried out a collision investigation report concluded the exact reason Mrs Bagley stepped into the path of the bus would never be known, he said: "[Mr Gallant] had insufficient time or distance to react."

Closing the inquest Yvonne Blake, area coroner for Norfolk gave a conclusion of road traffic collision and accidental death.


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