Africa-Press – South-Africa. Two learners sustained injuries after they fell through an emergency window of a Golden Arrow bus in Kensington this morning (Friday).
The bus was transporting learners from Khayelitsha to Maitland when the incident occurred on the corner of Vliegtuig Avenue and Sunderland Street.
According to reports, the two boys, aged 10 and 11, were playing and leaning against the window when it dislodged, causing them to fall.
They sustained head and leg injuries.
They were both treated on the scene before being rushed to hospital.
Bronwen Dyke-Beyer, the spokesperson for Golden Arrow, confirmed the incident. She says both learners are in stable condition.
“We are in contact with the hospital where they are being treated. We are hopeful that the (learners) will make a full recovery.”
According to Dyke-Beyer, they have reviewed the footage from the bus’s onboard cameras.
“Throughout the trip, some of the (learners) can be seen playing quite rowdily with each other whilst others are seated as per our conditions of carriage. Just before the incident, three children make their way to the front row of seats behind the driver’s cab and climb onto the seats – the footage does not show how they fall out of the window because they are just of range but in the preceding moments, they appear to be play wrestling.”
Dyke-Beyer says the bus was not overloaded.
“We have been made aware of reports that overcrowding contributed to this incident. We would like to state for the record that that is completely false.
“The bus was less than 40% full and had entire rows of empty seats. The window in question was clearly marked as an emergency exit window, which is required by legislation to give way when force is applied. Even if a window is pushed out, it is impossible to fall out of the said window if seated, as is required by our conditions of carriage.”
Dyke-Beyer appealed to parents to educate their children about safety rules.
“We would like to plead with parents to educate their children about the dangers of disobeying conditions of carriage and ignoring rules that are there for their own safety. Incidents of this type do not need to occur. Emergency windows are designed to give way when pressure is applied, but if these children had been seated, they could not have fallen out of the bus even if they managed to push out the window.”
Cheslyn Steenberg, Ward 56 councillor, says: “This morning, I can just thank God for grace. It again reminds me that life is short. I urge all school principals within Ward 56 to please engage the learners and explain the dangers of being playful in a moving vehicle. Moreover, I will, today, write to Golden Arrow to request that no scholar busses be overloaded because overloading contributes to incidents like these.”