Bus driver hurt 12 kids by slamming brakes on when they kept pressing stop bell

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A school bus driver slammed on his brakes and hurt 12 children when one of them kept pressing the stop bell, a court has heard.

Roger Wells, 63, allegedly hit the pedal so hard he flung one boy into the upstairs windscreen with such force it cracked.

Lewes Crown Court heard the Crown claims Wells yelled “F***ing stop ringing that bell” and then drove “faster than usual” before the sudden stop in Wallcrouch, near Wadhurst, East Sussex.

The double-decker bus had allegedly been overloaded with 98 children, despite having a maximum capacity of 84, and many of them were left screaming in panic and desperately trying to phone their parents following the October 2018 incident, The Sun reports.

A pole on the lower deck was ripped out as Wells braked and hit screaming children, the court heard.

Wells then stepped over kids lying down to replace the pole before driving back to Uplands Community College, jurors heard.

A 14-year-old hit by the pole while holding another said: “It felt like if I had let go, I would’ve gone through the windscreen.”

Jurors were told that Wells didn't check on any of the children following the incident, and when he got back to the school, he "left the bus and closed the door behind him".

A Year 7 pupil figured out how to open the doors and the children got off the bus, the court heard.

Wells, of Wadhurst, was suspended by Hams Travel following the incident.

He denies driving without due care and attention and failing to stop at the scene of an accident.

The trial continues.

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