Belvedere student died after being hit by bus at Greenwich danger crossing

News Shopper: Tributes to Praise Oduberu at the scene Tributes to Praise Oduberu at the scene

A budding Belvedere medical student died after being hit by a bus at a dangerous Greenwich junction where there were seven accidents in three years, an inquest heard.

Praise Oduberu, of  Caldy Road, was returning from an induction session for a summer job at The O2 on April 20 2012 when she stepped out in front a 486 bus at a pedestrian crossing opposite the Odeon cinema in Commercial Way.

A large number of family members - including the 25-year-old's still distraught mother - crammed into Southwark Coroner's Court for the twice-delayed inquest into her death on May 12, breaking down in tears as they listened to the details.

Bus driver Steven White described how he was driving out of the peninsula complex and, as he approached the green light into Bugsbys Way, could see Ms Oduberu up ahead, causing him to take his foot off the accelerator.

He said: "As she turned her head towards me I was satisfied she was going to see me."

Acting for the family, solicitor Ashitey Ollennu asked if he would have reduced speed if he had seen her step out into his bus lane.

He replied: "I was at the point of no return."

News Shopper: Family of bus crash victim gather at accident site

After hitting the woman, the bus continued on through the green light and across the junction into Southern Way where it came to a stop.

Catherine Nunn was passing and the impact's "loud whack", calling the emergency services before trying to help the woman, who was trapped underneath the bus.

She said: "I held her hand and spoke to her. I held my coat up for a while to stop people looking."

Ms Nunn went on: "I got on the bus and spoke to the driver. He seemed shocked, he was pale. I asked him if he wanted anything to eat. I remember him saying 'I thought I'd just hit her bag'."

She was pronounced dead at the scene and police accident investigators tried to work what had happened. But they found no evidence to contradict Mr White's report that he had been going no faster than 25mph and the lights had been green.

News Shopper: The six-carrigeway Commercial Way at the junction with Bugsbys Way, has bus lanes going through the middle

PC Victoria Benbow explained the junction was complicated with two lanes of traffic leaving the complex, two middle lanes with buses going in both directions, and a further two lanes coming into the complex.

A police report speculated Ms Oduberu could have become confused about the direction buses would come from, or may have seen a green man further across the road and thought it was safe to cross.

And PC Benbow said her own research showed there had been seven accidents in the preceding three years - four involving pedestrians - though the recent addition of a speed table to the junction had improved safety.

Concluding Ms Oduberu died from multiple injuries caused by a road traffic collision, Coroner Sarah Ormonde-Walshe assured the family: "There's no eyewitness evidence of anybody that she was anything other than asleep straight away. So no pain and suffering whatsoever."

Comments (5)

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12:00pm Tue 13 May 14

Simon bald says...

i remember that day very well,traffic was worse than normal round there. rip
i remember that day very well,traffic was worse than normal round there. rip Simon bald
  • Score: 2

12:12pm Tue 13 May 14

ms day says...

I HAVE WITNESSED BUSES SPEEDING AT THIS JUNCTION IGNORING TRAFFIC SIGNALS .
I HAVE WITNESSED BUSES SPEEDING AT THIS JUNCTION IGNORING TRAFFIC SIGNALS . ms day
  • Score: 1

12:26pm Tue 13 May 14

steeringwheelattendant says...

It is quite difficult to drive fast through this junction without causing discomfort to passengers or potentially damaging the vehicle, due to the speed table and camber of the road. Also, when a bus crosses through on a green light, there is a red light directly in front of you, and clearly visible to passengers on the bus - but nobody sees the sign beneath saying 'EXCEPT LOCAL BUSES'. I have been questioned before, as to why I 'jumped a red light' but upon explaining the layout, I got an apology.
It is quite difficult to drive fast through this junction without causing discomfort to passengers or potentially damaging the vehicle, due to the speed table and camber of the road. Also, when a bus crosses through on a green light, there is a red light directly in front of you, and clearly visible to passengers on the bus - but nobody sees the sign beneath saying 'EXCEPT LOCAL BUSES'. I have been questioned before, as to why I 'jumped a red light' but upon explaining the layout, I got an apology. steeringwheelattendant
  • Score: 1

4:51pm Tue 13 May 14

j.j. says...

ms day wrote:
I HAVE WITNESSED BUSES SPEEDING AT THIS JUNCTION IGNORING TRAFFIC SIGNALS .
Happens all the time, but it is not just their fault. The traffic arrangements and the sequencing of lights are just wrong - as I've written every time there has been an accident in this junction. How many more victim does the council need before it stops its anti-private motoring social experiment?
[quote][p][bold]ms day[/bold] wrote: I HAVE WITNESSED BUSES SPEEDING AT THIS JUNCTION IGNORING TRAFFIC SIGNALS .[/p][/quote]Happens all the time, but it is not just their fault. The traffic arrangements and the sequencing of lights are just wrong - as I've written every time there has been an accident in this junction. How many more victim does the council need before it stops its anti-private motoring social experiment? j.j.
  • Score: 2

10:05pm Thu 15 May 14

Webster2879023 says...

Why blame the bus driver? Don't you think he has suffered enough? Killing someone is not something most people take lightly! Yes the family of the dead woman are obviously distraught but what about the bus drivers family? Although they still have him around to talk to it doesn't mean he was unaffected. Has anyone though about how it may have affected him and the impact it has had on his family! At the end of the day if it was his fault the police would have pressed charges and other witnesses would have come forward stating he was speeding or that he was to blame for whatever reason but no-one did!

Before all the blame is put on to bus drivers think about all the facts and both sides of the story! Yes some bus drivers can be ignorant, speed etc... But that doesn't mean that they are all like that.
Bus drivers are also human beings and have feelings just like the rest of us!
Why blame the bus driver? Don't you think he has suffered enough? Killing someone is not something most people take lightly! Yes the family of the dead woman are obviously distraught but what about the bus drivers family? Although they still have him around to talk to it doesn't mean he was unaffected. Has anyone though about how it may have affected him and the impact it has had on his family! At the end of the day if it was his fault the police would have pressed charges and other witnesses would have come forward stating he was speeding or that he was to blame for whatever reason but no-one did! Before all the blame is put on to bus drivers think about all the facts and both sides of the story! Yes some bus drivers can be ignorant, speed etc... But that doesn't mean that they are all like that. Bus drivers are also human beings and have feelings just like the rest of us! Webster2879023
  • Score: 0

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