Bus loses roof after swiping crane
PASSENGERS on a South Tweed bus were craning their necks yesterday afternoon to see what all the fuss was about.
The roof of the Surfside bus they were travelling on ripped open like a tin can from the front to the back as the bus swiped a stationary crane.
Tweed Heads Police Sergeant Mark Garner said no one was injured in the incident, which occurred at 2pm at the intersection of Agnes Street and Minjungbal Drive.
“The Surfside bus was travelling north along Minjungbal Drive,” Sgt Garner said.
“The driver went to pick up and drop off passengers and he’s cut the lane a little bit short and the bus has struck the jib.
“It’s opened up the top of the bus.”
The crane driver, Chris Blair, was still shaken up yesterday after the crash.
“It was scary because it’s your worst nightmare,” Mr Blair said.
“You hear about it happening so many times but I never thought it would have happened to me.
“I’ve been in the game for 20 years.”
Mr Blair is the owner of R and C Tower Cranes, which contracts to Tweed Crane Hire.
“We have mirrors on the end of the jib to let us see around corners at intersections and I saw him coming,” he said.
“I saw the bus and pulled up short so he would have heaps of room.
“I thought ‘Gee he’s close’, and next thing bam, he smacked it big time, and he didn’t stop.”
The most important thing though, Mr Blair said, was that everyone was okay.
“It was lucky no one was hurt,” he said.
“It seemed like everyone was sitting on the other side of the bus.”
Mr Blair feared the crash may put him off the road for months until the repairs are done.
“There’s a lot of damage to the boom and jib; about $10,000 to $20,000 worth.
“It could be a couple of months until it’s fixed because it’s such a unique vehicle.
“And most people are off until the new year.”
Sgt Garner yesterday afternoon said no-one had been charged and police were continuing investigations into the crash.
“It appears the bus driver was at fault,” Sgt Garner said.
“A number of people on the bus and waiting for the bus have provided police with versions of what happened.”
A spokesperson from Surfside Buslines yesterday declined to comment.
The Tweed Heads fire and ambulance services attended the scene but were not required.