Immediately afterwards, I heard the bell being rung repeatedly. It took a few moments to register and remember that this was the emergency stop signal from the conductor. I pulled up in Redcliffe Gardens, stopped the engine and went back to see what the problem was.
My conductor was standing on the platform calmly smoking a fag, so I asked him what the problem was. He turned his head upwards and nodded. I followed his gaze and saw that the upper deck had a large hole ripped in it.
I was amazed. Apparently, as we had passed the roadworks, a mechanical digger had swung into the bus, gouging away several feet of the upper deck.
I asked if anyone was hurt, whether there had been anyone up there.
The conductor said, "Just one bloke, black fella, he got off the bus, white as a sheet!"