Boy saved by his bike

Declan Magee with his gran, Dot Waller
Declan Magee with his gran, Dot Waller

A BRAVE schoolboy who was saved by his bike after being run over by a bus amazingly managed to stagger to the side of the road before asking paramedics: “When will I be able to play football again?”

Declan Magee, eight, somehow escaped with bumps and bruises after being knocked over by a bus as he rode his bike across Brenda Road, in Hartlepool, on Monday morning.

Police and medics who have seen CCTV footage of the accident told the youngster they could not believe he hadn’t been either killed or seriously injured after the accident.

It is believed after being knocked off his bike by the bus, the way the sturdy Diamondback BMX cycle landed on the road meant it took the weight of the bus wheel rather than his leg.

Declan, who spent two days in hospital before being discharged, is now recovering at his Macauley Road home and while his family have been “worried sick” he revealed how he can’t wait to get back out playing football with his pals.

Declan, who goes to St Cuthbert’s Primary School and plays for the St Francis football team, said: “I feel OK now, my leg’s a bit sore now but it’s getting better.

“I don’t really know what happened. I looked one way and saw the bus but it had stopped, and when I looked the other way I thought I had time to cross the road so I started pedalling.

“That’s when the bus hit me.

“The hospital said I was quite lucky, and I think it’s lucky that my bike only has a buckled wheel and a bit of a rip on the seat.

“The hospital said I have to rest for a week, so I think my nana will spoil me and I’ll be playing on the PlayStation.

“It won’t be long before I can play footy again, so that’s good.”

Declan was with his grandmother Dot Waller, 60, and 10-year-old sister Courtney, on the way from her Frensham Road home to B&Q when the accident happened.

Dot, a retired shop assistant, said: “It all happened in a flash, but thankfully he is alright.

“The three of us were on the side of the road, and he saw the gap in the traffic and went out across the first part into the central reservation bit.

“It was on a blind corner, and the next thing I knew I heard a bang and then a scream. I just went numb.

“Luckily an ambulance crew happened to be passing so they were there straight away, and a lad off the bus got off and rang 999.

“The driver wasn’t to blame at all, it was just one of those accidents and we’re grateful the bus wasn’t travelling at any great speed.

“Declan had somehow managed to drag himself to the side of the road, and he was eventually put onto a spinal board and taken to North Tees hospital.

“He’s black and blue, bless him, but it could have been so much worse.”

Declan’s mum Anne-Marie, 31, was at her sister’s house in Hartlepool when she got a call telling her there had been an accident.

“I got the shock of my life, and he has been so lucky.

“From what we can gather from the police who have seen the CCTV, the way the bike appears to have landed has saved his leg. I don’t know how he hasn’t been killed, but I know I’ve never been so scared in all my life.

“When I got there, there were blue lights all over the place but he was on the side of the road and was talking, so that was a huge relief.

“I can’t really explain what’s like to get a call telling you your son has been run over by a bus.”

The bus company which operates the vehicle Declan was hit by has passed on its best wishes to the youngster.

John Conroy, managing director of Stagecoach North East, said: “We’d like to wish Declan a full and speedy recovery and are pleased to hear that he is feeling much better already.”