In the Media

Driver jailed for using bus 'as weapon' against cyclist

PUBLISHED February 17, 2012

Bristol bus driver imprisoned for 17 months for assault in which he knocked cyclist on to the road with his vehicle

A bus driver who used his bus like a "weapon" to knock a cyclist to the ground has been jailed for 17 months, a court official said.

Gavin Hill was shown on CCTV in an exchange with cyclist Phillip Mead before he lurched the bus sharply into the cyclist's path, throwing him from his bike.

The incident, which happened just off the St James Barton roundabout in Bristol, left the 43-year-old cyclist with fractures to his left wrist and leg, which needed to be plated, and to his thumb.

Hill, 29, of Frome, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and causing grievous bodily harm at Bristol crown court.

Sentencing the bus driver, Judge Mark Horton said: "This was not an accident. It was an assault, deliberate dangerous driving.

"You used that vehicle as a weapon to bully and intimidate the cyclist who, in the end, was struck by that bus."

Hill was disqualified from driving for two-and-a-half years and ordered to pass an extended driving test.

City council CCTV footage showed Mead remonstrating with the bus driver before continuing his journey.

Seconds later, Hill, who had been been driving for Bugler Coaches for 10 months, veered sharply, knocking the father of two on to the road.

Paramedics treated Mead at the scene, where Hill was arrested by police on 5 April last year.

Gerald Creed, managing director of Bugler Coaches, told the Bristol Evening Post: "We were deeply shocked when we heard of this incident and once we had established what had happened, Mr Hill was immediately dismissed as we did not want him driving one of our buses ever again.

"We are proud of all our drivers who are extremely professional and highly vigilant of the safety of passengers, pedestrians and cyclists.

"We can assure all passengers that this was an isolated incident by a driver that badly let down our company." © 2012 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds