Quick-witted woman stops runaway bus

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The Independent Online
A WOMAN who saw a runaway bus rolling down a hill managed to jump on board and bring it to a halt, saving it from ploughing into a school.

Ellen Maiden, 46, from Kidderminster, Worcestershire, was about to cross the road in front of the bus when she realised it was moving with no driver. She ran after it and wrenched open the door, but she could not reach the handbrake and had to steer the vehicle onto a grass bank. There were no passengers.

Mrs Maiden, who suffered leg and elbow injuries, said: "I didn't think about it at the time. It all happened so fast but afterwards I burst into tears - I could have died.

"The bus had been parked at a bus stop. It's quite a steep hill and the bus was starting to go faster. I had to run to keep up with it but I when I got in I couldn't get to the handbrake. I'm only five foot tall."

Mrs Maiden, a former minibus driver, said a serious accident could have happened. Just two hours earlier children would have been walking up from the hill from the school at the bottom.

It is believed the bus driver had stopped to buy a newspaper and had failed to put the handbrake on.

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