Families oppose bus route after X9 drove through their gardens
PUBLISHED: 13:00 12 February 2016
Jeremy Long \ JCL Photography
Families in Nailsea are fuming after a bus drove through their gardens to avoid parked cars.
Residents watched in shock as the Abus X9 mounted the curb and drove through three gardens in Coombe Road on February 3.
Julie Brunston said: “He drove through two of my neighbours’ gardens until he got to mine and then he dismounted through my drive to get back onto the road.
“He was driving in an unsafe manner with people on the bus. I’m shocked and angry.
“We’ve complained about the buses before because these roads weren’t built for a bus route, it’s a residential area.”
The Bristol to Nailsea route is run jointly by First Bus and Abus and runs in one direction along Coombe Road and Hazelbury Drive.
Its frequency was increased to every 30 minutes in August, despite opposition from residents.
North Somerset Council has investigated the matter and in an email to the complainants, Cllr Elfan Ap Rees said: “This is a commercially run route, providing a service to local residents and a public road, so we cannot ban buses from using it.
“Had this been an emergency vehicle trying to get through, the consequences could have been more serious.
“So, while the bus driver was at fault here, alternatively he would have been forced to block the road waiting for the parked car to be moved by the owner or police, or had to back up, which would have been even more dangerous.
“It surely behoves all users of Coombe Road to act with due consideration for others.”
Tim Loughlin, Abus general manager, said: “The driver has only been with us for a week or so. He decided this was the best course of action, but unfortunately that wasn’t the case.
“We fully appreciate the drivers have a difficult job when they come across narrow roads. He’s had a strong talking to and he’s been reminded what course of action he should take. Hopefully that will never happen again.
“We are currently restoring the gardens with a local landscape firm.”