Woman, 32, killed when two buses crashed in Victoria rush hour tragedy

Woman, 32, killed when two buses crashed in Victoria rush hour tragedy

August 12, 2021

PICTURED: ‘Kind and beautiful’ woman, 32, killed when two buses crashed into pedestrians in London Victoria rush hour tragedy

  • Melissa Burr, 32, from Rainham in Kent, was killed outside Victoria train station
  • Ms Burr – who was a pedestrian – died while two others were treated in hospital
  • A forth person injured in horror crash was treated at the scene – not in hospital

A woman who died when two buses crashed into each other in London has been named.

Melissa Burr, 32, from Rainham in Kent, was killed outside Victoria Railway Station on Tuesday.

Ms Burr, who was a pedestrian, died while two others were treated in hospital and a forth checked at the scene.

Her family said in a statement: ‘We are absolutely devastated by loss and the hole that this incident has left in our lives.

‘Melissa was a kind and thoughtful soul, had a quirky charm with such a bright future ahead of her.

‘As a family we naturally want to understand how such a tragedy occurred, but for now we just want time and space to mourn our beautiful Melissa and send her to rest with her late father.’

Melissa Burr, 32, from Rainham in Kent, was killed outside Victoria Railway Station on Tuesday

Ms Burr, who was a pedestrian, died while two others were treated in hospital and a forth checked at the scene 

Pictures show two crashed buses by the London station, one of which is the 507 to Waterloo. The incident happened at 8.25am during the morning rush hour on Tuesday

The victim’s family said in a statement: ‘We are absolutely devastated by loss and the hole that this incident has left in our lives’ 

Ms Burr had been in a relationship with James Watson since May 14, 2018, according to her Facebook.

The couple has only last month visited Mayrhofen in Austria and posed for pictures outside a bar.

Mr Watson has been a Smart Meter engineer at Quinn Infrastructure Services in London since April, his profile says. The Chelsea fan is from Medway in Kent.

Detective Constable Chris May of Met’s Serious Collision Investigation Unit added: ‘This tragic incident claimed the life of a young woman and our thoughts are with her family at this sad time.

‘We are continuing to piece together the circumstances surrounding this collision and I am very keen to hear from any witnesses who have not yet spoken with police. If you have information please don’t hesitate to get in touch.’

Witnesses raced to help after the crash involving the 507 bus to Waterloo and another at around 8.25am. But Ms Burr was pronounced dead at 9am.

One witness was travelling on another bus when she ‘heard a bang’ and saw a woman ‘underneath’ a bus.

She said: ‘She had a dark floral skirt and blonde hair. There were a lot of people around her, one lady was holding her hand and a guy was trying to help.’

The witness said the bus she was travelling on left moments later, adding she and her fellow passengers were left feeling shocked and ‘helpless’.

Big Issue seller Jacob Davidson, 36, described how passers-by ‘swarmed’ the scene following the crash to try to help.

He said: ‘It was just a loud bang, the bus smashed into the back of the one in front. The front of it was all smashed in.

‘I didn’t think much of it until two cab drivers stepped out of their cabs, jumped over the railing and started looking under the bus.

‘There was a sound of panic… people shouting ”can we get help”.’ Mr Davidson said commuters rushed to the railing to see what was happening.

Ms Burr’s family said: ‘Melissa was a kind and thoughtful soul, had a quirky charm with such a bright future ahead of her’ 

Detective Constable Chris May of Met’s Serious Collision Investigation Unit added: ‘This tragic incident claimed the life of a young woman and our thoughts are with her family at this sad time.’ Pictured: The scene on Tuesday

A Met Police spokesman told MailOnline: ‘Police were called at 08:25hrs on Tuesday, 10 August to reports of a collision involving two buses and three pedestrians outside Victoria Railway Station’

The incident happened at 8.25am during the morning rush hour, with police pictured on the scene at the time

He added: ‘There was a woman laying outside the bus driver’s door being helped by two or three people.

‘The I looked under the front of the bus and there was another man stuck under the bus.’

Another Big Issue seller, Danielle Cain, said she ‘heard a woman scream’ and saw ‘a load of people gathered round’.

She continued: ‘It was awful, I knew instantly something bad had happened. I was told later a woman had got trapped under a bus.’

Another person said one bus slammed on its brakes as pedestrians crossed in front, then the bus behind smashed into the back, throwing it forward into the victims.

Images from the scene, just by the busy station’s coach depot, showed the vehicles on the road, indicating they had not careered off into the pavement.

Following the crash, commuters said the crossing had been ‘a nightmare for years’ with ‘buses rushing in and out’, and the area ‘needs desperate improvement now’.    

The Underground’s Circle and District lines have also suspended sections of their routes this week, causing further chaos for those having the find alternate routes.

Fazian Raja, 27, from Ilford, east London, said: ‘I saw some people run across the road in front of the bus and that’s when I heard a very loud bang.

‘So I think he must have slammed on the brakes and the bus behind him went straight into him.

‘Some guy called the police and in five or 10 minutes they were here. I couldn’t see what was going on because I was too far away.’

The bus had to be hoisted off the ground by a fire engine to free the victim, shocked passers-by said.

Recovery trucks arrived just before 4pm to remove the buses, one of which has a shattered windscreen.

Georgiana Mate, 29, who works nearby, said: ‘I was having a cigarette outside and heard a loud bang. So I went over to the buses and I saw someone under the bus.

‘The police arrived about 10 minutes later, but I went back inside and started work.’

Police at the scene at Victoria bus station, central London, after a crash involving two buses in which a female pedestrian was killed

The scene at Victoria bus station, central London, after a crash involving two buses in which a female pedestrian was killed

Margarita Pal, who works nearby, said: ‘I arrived around 9:25 and saw all the police cars and ambulances. I was thinking there must have been a fight or something like that.

‘But then I asked someone outside Pret who said she thought someone had died and had heard the scream.

‘I was really surprised with the buses, because I see them every day and normally they are very careful. I use the 507 as well and there’s never been a problem.’

A worker at the Shakespeare Pub said: ‘We only heard the bang and I’ve never seen that many police cars and ambulances in my life. And there were two fire engines.

‘I heard one of the buses went into the back of the other, which then hit the woman. That poor women has lost her life and she was only in her 30s.’

Police cordoned off the area around Terminus Place before later reopening it on Tuesday.

Transport for London’s Commissioner Andy Byford said: ‘We are extremely saddened that a woman has tragically died after a collision with a bus and our thoughts are with her family and friends.

‘We are thinking of everyone affected by this incident and will support everyone however we can.

‘We are working urgently with the operator of the two buses, Go Ahead London, and the police to investigate what happened.’ 

The Met said on Tuesday: ‘Officers from the Met’s Serious Collision Investigation Unit are appealing for witnesses and footage following a fatal collision outside Victoria Railway Station.

‘Police were called at 08:25hrs on Tuesday, 10 August to reports of a collision involving two buses and three pedestrians outside Victoria Railway Station.

‘Emergency services attended and immediately provided first aid. A female pedestrian, believed to be aged in her 30s, was pronounced dead at the scene at 09:00hrs.

‘Her next of kin have been informed and are being supported by specially trained officers.

‘Two other people were treated for non-life threatening injuries. All parties remained at the scene. There have been no arrests.

‘Anyone with information should call the Serious Collision Investigation Unit witness lines on 0208 543 5157, call 101 or tweet @MetCC quoting 1450/10AUG. Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.’

A London Ambulance Service spokesman said at the time: ‘We were called at 8.25am today (10 August) to reports of a road traffic collision at Victoria Bus Station.

‘We sent three ambulance crews, two medics in cars, an advanced paramedic, an incident response officer, an advanced paramedic, and our hazardous area response team. We also dispatched London’s Air Ambulance.

‘We treated three people at the scene, and took two of them to hospital. Sadly, a fourth person died at the scene.’

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