A COACH driver who crashed into the back of a car on his way to collect children from a primary school has been found guilty of careless driving.

Peter Wright, a director of Bradley Fold Travel Ltd, denied driving without due care and attention following an accident at Lea Gate, Harwood, in June last year.

Harold Smith, prosecuting, told Bolton magistrates that Wright, aged 58, of Ringley Road West, Radcliffe, crashed into a Citroen Picasso car, driven by Jacqueline Henshaw, which was turning right into an alleyway off Lea Gate.

Ms Henshaw, who had her four-year-old daughter in the back, said the impact of the crash, which happened in heavy rain, made her head hit the steering wheel and she needed hospital treatment for neck injuries.

She told magistrates that immediately after the crash, Mr Wright had been concerned about her and her daughter.

“He said he had braked in plenty of time but the brakes had locked and he hit me,” she said.

Wright, who described himself as a director and transport manager, said he had been driving professionally since 1972 and regularly maintained his coaches himself.

He told magistrates that he had been travelling in the 53-seater coach to collect children from St Brendan’s Primary School when the accident happened.

He said the coach and tyres were in good condition and he had pulled away from the traffic lights at Longsight on to Lee Gate behind the Picasso and a gap of 50 yards opened up between them.

He said he saw Ms Henshaw indicate to turn right and applied his brakes, but the coach skidded into the back of her vehicle.

He said a greasy road surface had caused the coach to skid and denied he had made a driving error.

But magistrates decided he had not left sufficient space to allow him to stop in time and found him guilty of driving without due care and attention.

He was fined £75, ordered to pay £250 costs and had three points on his licence.