Authority to investigate claim teenage girl left stranded in Coagh after school bus drove off

Coagh schoolgirl left stranded after bus drove on
Coagh schoolgirl left stranded after bus drove on

The Education Authority (formerly Southern Education and Library Board) is investigating a claim that a school bus drove off, leaving a teenage girl standing by the roadside in Coagh.

A spokesman for the organisation with responsibility for providing bus services to pupils in the area told the Mail the alleged incident is being looked at “as a matter of priority”.

The girl’s father contacted the paper to highlight what he believes are a number of safety issues facing the particular bus service.

The incident under investigation is understood to have taken place on the morning of Friday, February 19.

“My daughter missed the bus at the usual spot where she gets on”, the man, who did not wish to be named, explained.

“My wife drove her to another stop and even though two other children got on, my daughter had just reached the doors of the bus when the doors were closed and the bus drove off.”

The Mid Ulster man said the incident had been “distressing and embarrassing” for his daughter, who then returned to the family car and was driven to school by her mother.

“Not only was it distressing and embarrassing for her, but it was also very dangerous. I have raised the issue with the board (EANI) and am still awaiting an outcome on that.

“I would like to ask the board why they seem to be allowing their drivers to take off at speed? I have raised issues about the safety of the children on the bus before as they aren’t even being given the chance to put their seatbelts on and take their seats before the bus moves off.”

In response to the issues raised by the local parent within this article, a spokesperson for the Education Authority NI (EANI) confirmed that a complaint has recently been received “in relation to a transport matter”.

Continuing, the EANI spokesman told the MAIL: “The Education Authority has been in contact with the parent and the issues raised are being looked into as a matter of priority. As this is still under active consideration, it would be inappropriate to comment further.”