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Mum killed in horrific bus drama

A PENSIONER died when she was dragged under a bus while walking over a zebra crossing on Accrington's Peel Street bus station.

A PENSIONER died when she was dragged under a bus while walking over a zebra crossing on Accrington's Peel Street bus station.

Eyewitnesses said mum-of-three Joyce Rigby, 61, was dragged 20 feet along the road by the Pilkington's double-decker during the Wednesday afternoon horror.

She was trapped under the bus, which was turning into the station, and, despite the combined efforts of paramedics and firefighters to save her, Mrs Rigby, who lived alone in Fairfield Street, Accrington, died at the scene.

Thomas Bates, 41, who was waiting at the bus stop next to the jubilee clock when the accident happened, said: "The bus was left with a big dent in the side. You could see where it had hit her.

"The driver must have been distracted.''

The scene was quickly screened off as scores of stunned onlookers gathered outside the Regency Bar across the road.
A bag of frozen peas from Mrs Rigby's shopping bag was left on the crossing.

Firefighters used a specialist low-pressure air bag to lift the bus off her, but she was already dead.

Leading Firefighter Chris-topher Fogarty said: "It was a very harrowing experience.''

Bus company owner Ray Pilkington yesterday named the driver as Roy Harris, believed to be in his 40s, from Clitheroe.

He said: "He has worked for us around five months but is an experienced driver who has held a PSV licence for around 20 years.''

Mr Pilkington added: "We haven't heard much about the accident. The bus has been taken to a police garage in Burnley for forensic examination and the driver escorted away by police.''

Sergeant John Kennedy confirmed the driver had been detained for questioning.

A police spokesman said: "We would like anyone who saw the incident to contact the road policing unit on 353767."

Yesterday, Mrs Rigby's family gathered at her home and were being comforted by a priest.

In a brief statement, her three sons said she was a fun-loving "youthful'' woman, who lived life to the full.

They described her as an active member of the church, who had time to spare for everyone.

They said: "Joyce will be missed tremendously by all of her family members and a multitude of friends.''


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