Police investigating the circumstances surrounding how a nine-year-old boy fell out of a moving coach on the A47 will be examining the vehicle.
The youngster, who has been named as Sebastian Goold remains in a critical condition in Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, after falling out of the double decker coach on the A47 at Tilney All Saints’ at 3.45pm yesterday (Sunday, April 13).
Police say the door has somehow opened after people were queuing for the toilet immediately prior to the incident.
The boy and his father were part of a Stamford Rugby Club party, which were returning home after competing at a tournament in Holt. His mother was travelling in a car as part of the convoy.
Inspector Chris Brooks, from roads policing, said: “This is a very difficult time for the boy’s family and we have specially trained officers supporting them.
“We’ve already interviewed some of the passengers on board as well as drivers who were in the area at the time of the incident.
“As a result of initial enquiries we know just prior to the incident that people were queuing for the toilet. Somehow, the door has opened and the boy has fallen from the moving coach.
“The coach was recovered yesterday and is being kept in a secure compound. The vehicle will be examined by police and VOSA investigators and this is the focus of our enquiry at this stage.
“We will also be speaking to other people who were on board at the time of the incident and it would be inappropriate to speculate on possible causes at this stage.”
The youngster suffered serious multiple injuries and was treated at the scene by Norfolk Accident and Rescue Service’s critical care paramedic Carl Smith along with an ambulance crew and rapid response vehicle.
The injured boy was taken to the Queen Elizabeth hospital in Kings Lynn by land ambulance where he was stabilised and was later transferred to Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge.
Stamford Rugby Club President Steve Fowkes said Sebastian was a “promising” player.
He said: “All our thoughts are with Sebastian Goold and his family.
“We’ve had some fantastic messages of support from other rugby clubs that were at the tournament, and also from a rugby club in Ireland where a similar incident happened.”
He added: “The team have been very successful. There are around 400 playing for the team.
“We don’t push in any sort of direction, they are all learning the skills they need before they have a particular role on the team.
“But Seb is a promising player who is part of a very successful team.
“The medical staff are now taking charge and it is a question of waiting.”
Chairman Neil Jolly met parents and players of the Under 8s and Under 9s teams, who the boy was playing for, when they arrived back in the town.
He said: “I was there when the bus got back last night and everyone was very subdued.
“There was a very quiet and reserved atmosphere.
“We have our young teams going off to play in tournaments all over the country and naturally you expect them to all come back.
“We have a group of 200 mini players at the club who all enjoy their rugby and the boy is very much a part of that.
“The thoughts of everyone here at the club are with him and his family.”
Mr Jolly said the boy had fallen from an emergency door of the 71-seater, double decker coach.