Whilst everyone had finished off their terrifying Thursday, rounding off an arguably busy week with a night of trick or treating in rather sinister dresses, listening to spooky stories or diving into the fun of carving pumpkins, a few families were shell-shocked by the news that they had heard that night.

At around 10:15pm, just as Kenneth Matcham had been finishing his last shift for the day, having spoken to his daughter just 20 minutes beforehand, he was the ill-fated victim of a tragic and catastrophic crash involving one car and two single decker buses. The 60 year old man was thought to have attempted to divert from the incoming car and, despite losing his own life, he has been praised by several for the immediate initiative he took to protect those on the 358 he had been driving, hence saving 15 lives.

Instead the car, whose 24 year old driver was thought to have been on drugs that night, crashed into another bus, whilst the 358 bus that Matcham had been manoeuvring had ended up in the back garden of a resident nearby. The driver of the car has been arrested on the suspicion of “dangerous and drug driving.”

Having occurred at the very door steps of Saint Olave’s Grammar School, which I happen to go to, this incident left many students and teachers alike traumatised, who often pass by or cross through the junction connecting The Avenue, Park Avenue and Sevenoaks Road together. One student in particular stated that “this accident was very tragic indeed, and it is especially agonizing that it is a bus that I take on a daily basis. In my opinion, more action needs to be taken by Transport for London in order to protect the wellbeing of both students and commuters to prevent such cases from taking place in the future.”

I too take the 358 every day, to and from school, and so I am truly devastated to hear that a driver, whom I have probably passed by without realising, had the courage to sacrifice his own life for the safety of those on the bus. I therefore strongly believe that the TFL have to do more to protect the wellbeing of the passengers, but also the drivers, who have an incredibly difficult job to execute for the benefit of several in London.

This is not the first time accidents have taken place on Sevenoaks Road, a very hectic road that runs from the edge of the M25 to Orpington High Street. A year ago, a driver, who had lost control of their car after taking a left turn at a roundabout, crashed into the wall of a back garden, and previously, many have suffered from minor accidents as a result of inappropriate crossings or miscommunications between the driver and the pedestrian.

If you are a driver yourself, I urge you to take more care whilst driving, because it only takes a minor incident like this to create major repercussions on everyone involved. Likewise, if you are a pedestrian or commuter, make sure that you are always aware of the traffic around you, whether that be whilst walking, or more importantly, whilst crossing any particular road!

In the meantime, donations to the Matcham family would be very thoughtful in this very, very difficult period, and to contribute, please support this cause by clicking onto the following link: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/kennethmatcham

By Aaron Sanjeevan, Saint Olave's Grammar School