An elderly woman waited almost an hour for an ambulance after she was left dazed and bloody in a bus fall in Angus.
The woman had just boarded the Stagecoach 39 Arbroath to Dundee service at the town’s bus station when the incident happened around 2.45pm on Tuesday.
Witnesses said the woman fell backwards and cracked her head off the corner of a seat as the bus left the station – knocking her out cold.
Passengers helped the woman after she fell and used a compress to tend to her while she lay on the floor of the bus bleeding.
A spokeswoman for Stagecoach East Scotland said: “We were concerned to hear that one of our customers suffered an injury after boarding one of our services in Arbroath on Tuesday afternoon and wish the passenger a speedy recovery.
“Our driver contacted the emergency services and the vehicle remained at Arbroath bus station until they attended. Other passengers on the route were transferred to the next available service to continue their journey.
“We have already launched an investigation into the full circumstances of the incident and will take action where necessary to avoid any incidents of this nature in the future.”
An ambulance was called but “an exceptionally high level of immediately life threatening calls” at the time meant it didn’t arrive until 3.30pm.
The pensioner was taken to Ninewells Hospital for treatment and given a scan to check for bleeding on the brain.
She was kept in overnight for observation following her ordeal and she was due to be discharged on Wednesday evening.
One witness said: “It happened right in front of my eyes and everything just happened so quickly.
“The lady was obviously very confused about where she was and where she was going and bleeding quite heavily.
“We sat with her talking and helping clean her up and keeping a compress on the back of her head.”
The woman’s niece Jenny Cooper from Arbroath thanked everyone who came to her aunt’s aid on Tuesday.
“She suffered a nasty bang to the back of the head and was bleeding,” she said.
“I believe she was knocked unconscious but luckily there was no bleeding on the brain.
“She’s been kept in for observation and the bus driver has also been up to see the family.
“We’d obviously like to thank everyone on the bus who helped her after her fall.”
A Scottish Ambulance Service spokesperson said: “Every call is prioritised to ensure patients get the most appropriate response, with the sickest and most seriously injured patients being the highest priority.
“We experienced an exceptionally high level of immediately life threatening calls that day, and all our local crews were already attending to other incidents in the area.
“We dispatched the nearest available ambulance while one of our clinical advisors attempted to contact the 999 caller to ensure there had been no change in the patient’s condition.
“The patient was transferred safely to Ninewells Hospital.
“The service encourages all patients who are dissatisfied with the service they have received to contact our patient experience team to enable us to investigate the circumstances around their complaint and see if any lessons can be learned.”