A MAN knocked down and killed by a bus in Sheffield may have been goaded by local youths to step out in front of it as a dare.
The 52-year-old was hit by a single-decker Stagecoach bus as it travelled uphill along Bracken Moor Lane, towards Broomfield Lane, in Stocksbridge.
Locals named the dead man as Steve Wood, from Haywood Lane, Deepcar.
One woman, who did not want to be named, told The Star she had heard rumours Mr Wood was taunted by youths into playing ‘chicken’ with the bus as it approached.
“Everybody is saying he came across some kids on Bracken Moor Lane, and they dared him to play chicken in front of the bus,” she said.
“He must have misjudged it because he was hit.”
Eye-witnesses said the bus driver swerved to avoid Mr Wood, but he hit the side of the bus, shattering one of its windows, before falling heavily to the ground.
Locals said Mr Wood was divorced but in a relationship, and had a sister in Sheffield and a son in Scotland.
It is believed he worked until three or four years ago as an inspector at N Bramall and Sons abattoir in Oxspring near Barnsley, but gave the job up.
Mr Wood was well known in the pubs of Deepcar and Stocksbridge, often accompanied by his little black dog.
One drinker in The Red Grouse pub on Spink Hall Lane, Stocksbridge, told The Star: “He was a decent enough bloke, but he always seemed to have the weight of the world on his shoulders.
“He seemed to keep a lot of things to himself.”
The bus was the Stagecoach ‘nipper’ number 20A, which serves as a link to the Supertram.
The driver - a 24-year-old man from Sheffield - was not hurt.
Police said there were several passengers aboard, mostly young people, and they would be interviewed.
A Stagecoach spokeswoman confirmed: “A pedestrian was seriously injured and later died following an accident involving a Supertram Link bus on the Stocksbridge estate.
“Our first thoughts are with the family of the man who has died.
“There were no injuries to anyone travelling on the bus. We will be assisting the police in any way we can as part of their investigation.”
A South Yorkshire Police spokesman confirmed a man was killed after it is thought he started to cross the road as a bus approached.
Anyone who witnessed the tragedy at 6.20pm on Saturday, is urged to contact South Yorkshire Police on 0114 220 2020 quoting incident 987 of March 19.