29 Injured as Bus “Brakes Sharply” and Wheels fall off!

Barbados Bus Accidents

Don’t try to tell me this is normal!

The rear wheels were ripped from a Transport Board bus when it “braked sharply”, according to an article in The Nation.

My question is, “Why did the wheels come off?”

Was it metal fatigue? Lack of maintenance? Improper installation? Corrosion?

How many other buses are in similar precarious condition? What is the Transport Board going to do to ensure that its buses are safe?

Here’s the article from The Nation, but naturally the paper asks none of the above questions and makes no observations other than the wheels came off the bus.

From reading The Nation, one would think that this is a perfectly normal occurrence!


Filed under Barbados

17 responses to “29 Injured as Bus “Brakes Sharply” and Wheels fall off!

  1. michael

    what i can see from this picture,tell me it is a case of very bad maintenance this should never happen, i have been a mechanic for over 30 years city& guild qualified,if the suspension is of the air bag type …..which is to say it rides on air cushions, that being the case the axle would be secured to chassie by large retaining rods so in the event that the air cushions deflate or are ripped from there mountings the axle would remain place…….from what i can see it is not of the type i mentioned above ……the other type is what is called leaf spring which are sevral steel plates stacked one on top of another, now in thoes stacked plates there is one plate which has two anchor points through two steel pins are threaded (pushed through) now from what i can see it would appear that the springs did not break …..there is a groupe of four bolts to each spring holding them to the axle i can’t see how all eight bolts would break at one time ,what i would surmise is that it only had in four bolts, two per spring so if one bolt broke that would mean that the axle is now being held in place with two bolts which cant hold …….under the load(torque) there is no way that the axle can stay in place

  2. yatinkiteasy

    When I`m at the Soup Bowl in Bathsheba, I often wonder about the safety of those Buses that make the trip from Bridgetown there and back, several times a day.Why dont they use small coaches instead. There never seems to be more than 5 people on board.

  3. dangerous driver

    have you ever seen how those buses are driven especially in the country? transport board drivers treat the road and the rest of people using it with scant respect. they drive at crazy speeds. i have on two occasions been forced off the road into bushes because i had no choice when a bus came straight at me driving at a very fast speed on a tiny road.


    If the BARBADOS LABOUR PARTY (a great party) was in power -you would not have heard the last of this.

  5. Chicharron

    Well I must say that this is not the first time that it has happened. I remember a few years back the wheel came off of a bus in Speightstown and broke somebody’s leg or something like that. However, I can say that to my knowledge, it is not a regular occurrence;dont interpret that to mean that I am making excuses for the Transport Board…

  6. Rumplestilskin

    Barbados needs to seriously assess its transport system.

    There are traffic engineering issues, finance issues, Gov’t competing with private enterprise on the lucrative routes while taxpayers subsidise the Transport Board, maintenance issues and behavioural issues, both on the part of drivers and passengers.

    It is time that a proper assessment of the whole system is undertaken with a new public transport system and processes.


  7. Pearl

    I couldn’t believe what I had seen when they showed the picture of the accident on the CBC night news on Friday!

    I hope the relevant authorities do their checks and make sure this never happens again. It would be interesting to know whether it was because of poor maintenance or a fault in the manufacture of the bus.

    If it’s poor maintenance due to lack of funds then the country seriously needs to look out where it can get those funds to service the transport boards. It doesn’t make sense having free transport for children if that bus is a moving death trap.

    Let’s thank God that the persons involved in the accident only sustained minor injuries. They were extremely lucky!

  8. michael

    To Pearl & Rumplestilskin
    You are booth right in what you have said, the Barbados government has to start taking it’s responsibility seriously a bus should never leave the garage in that condition, and come to think about neither should any vehicle going onto a public road ,the engineers should be held responsible for they work there must be a chief engineer who take overall responsibility for all the vehicles.Let me say this had this happen where i work all the vehicles belonging to that company would be removed from all roads and all the engineers would be suspended immediately,the records for that vehicle would be pulled and the last person to have work on it would be looking for new employment .if this vehicle could be put out for service what are the others like, was it not so long ago that a mini bus crashed and the driver was killed, when that vehicle was checked it was found to have defective brakes,the government has to have a body that can inspect vehicles on the road for road worthiness this cant be left to the police you have to have people with the knowledge to check all heavy vehicles fire trucks garbage trucks and the like,if that vehicle was going up a steep hill and that axle came out like that what would have happened to the vehicles following it.What seems to be happening is a lot of people being paid for little work and management ineffective

  9. Lp

    No wonder Ian Jessamy’s contract is not being renewed.

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  11. peltdownman

    As far as I know, maintenance on Transport Board buses is carried out under contract by UCAS. Just how one company managed to get a monopoly contract for maintenance is a mystery, but it raises some questions. Who controls how much the Board is billed for maintenance? Who is responsible for quality control at UCAS? Does UCAS have a proper recorded inspection process which will identify who carries out work and who inspects it? Who is responsible for ordering spare parts and for maintaining the integrity of the inventory – The Board or UCAS? Was this a case where somebody was just lazy and left out some bolts because “it can work without them”? I can go on and on about the very difficult position the Transport Board has been put in over many years by respective governments, but let’s be true Bajans and blame the messenger!

  12. Bradley432

    We would hope that a proper inspection is carried by an independent Automotive Engineer to determine the cause of this rear axle failure.
    But we should not rule out sabotage.
    Some of the roads in Barbados are so rough and full of pot holes that it is possible that the excessive strain and stresses experienced could have cause the rear axle “U” bolts to shear,and especially, if those bolts were already loose or have been over torqued.
    Four weeks ago I imported some top of the line Shock Absorbers to replace a set on my 4×4 . After traveling ,the northern parishes and parts of St Philip and Christ Church, those super duper shock absorbers have given in.

  13. Sundowner


    Bathsheba buses are packed till 9am, a mini bus runs as well, when they get to Gaggs Hill they’re full……..the other way, Bathsheba buses from Fairchild Street bus stand are usually always packed full as well, not everyone gets off at Soup Bowl!
    I followed a bus down Horse Hill one afternoon & couldn’t keep up with it when we got to Jolly Road!! frightening to watch (when I saw it)

  14. 740

    If that was a minibus ya would have heard de whole a bim and de call radio programmes.

  15. John

    To Kissmya,

    The BLP were in when Joe’s River crash happened & nothing has changed!!

  16. tiki

    does anyone know the bus license number?

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