Driver of bus hit by huge wave at Newgale continued despite warnings, says Pembrokeshire County Council

Western Telegraph: PICTURE: Martin Cavaney Photography. PICTURE: Martin Cavaney Photography.

Pembrokeshire County Council has said a driver of a bus that was hit by a large wave at Newgale, prompting the rescue of 14 people by emergency services, chose to continue along the road despite warnings from local authority staff.

The Richards Bros bus was hit by a large wave on Saturday, prompting an emergency response from police, firefighters, ambulance and coastguard crews.

Richards Bros said the driver was told "the road was passable with care".

In statement, the council said: "Pembrokeshire County Council’s own enquiries confirmed that the road was in the process of being closed and that signage was being erected at Pen-y-Cwm, north of Newgale.

"However, the Council operatives at Pen-y-Cwm were already directing traffic to use an alternative safe route avoiding the Newgale road

"The bus driver was informed of the situation at Newgale and that the alternative route should be followed.

"However the driver chose to continue his journey along the main road.

"A Council operative followed the bus in his own car equipped with a flashing orange beacon on the roof.  He was also flashing his headlights in an attempt the stop the bus but was unsuccessful. 

"A member of the public on the bridge at the bottom Pen-y-Cwm Hill also tried to flag the bus down with a torch but he too was unsuccessful.

"The Council has provided information to the Police in relation to their investigation into the incident."

A spokesman for Richards Bros, told the Western Telegraph:
“The driver has given his statement to the insurance company. He arrived in Pen y Cwm at the same time as the council workers.
“He spoke to a man who was putting out signs, and he was informed that the road was passable with care.
“Based on that information he continued on his journey, passing two or three cars coming in the opposite direction.
“Our drivers are very used to the conditions and do respect the council workmen.”

 

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