A bus driver who smashed the barrier at a level crossing on Bollo Lane, Acton, has been disqualified from driving for 12-months following a British Transport Police (BTP) investigation.
Robel Emagnu (38) of Abbey Road, London, appeared at Isleworth Crown Court on Friday, 1 April, after pleading not guilty to dangerous driving and failing to report a road traffic collision.
Emagnu was also given a four-month prison sentence - suspended for 12 months - and 80 hours of community service.
The court heard the incident took place just after 3.45pm on Thursday, 1 July 2010, as Emagnu approached the level crossing on Bollo Lane, W3 in the bus, which was carrying approximately 20 passengers.
Despite the warning lights flashing as the barriers began to descend, Emagnu drove through the crossing, causing the barrier to smash the rear window of the bus, showering a passenger with glass.
The incident was witnessed on CCTV cameras by the crossing signalman who notified police.
Onboard CCTV seized from the bus clearly identified Emagnu as the driver, as well as giving a clear image of the bus on approach to the crossing while the warning lights were flashing.
Emagnu was identified with the help of the bus company and summonsed to appear at court.
Sergeant Malcolm McCulloch, the investigating officer, said: “Emagnu’s actions were reckless and dangerous, not least considering he was responsible for the safety of passengers on the bus. His sentencing is a salutary lesson to us whilst driving.
“We are working closely with Network Rail to improve peoples’ knowledge and take action against those who continue to misuse crossings.
“Level crossings, and other crossings where road, footpaths and rail cross, are designed to keep people safe. And, when used correctly, that is exactly what they do.
“However, drivers who willingly flout the law and place themselves and others in danger should be in no doubt that if caught doing so, they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”