A MOTHER whose teenage son was hit in the head by a bus wants to slow down traffic on a busy coastal road.

Emily O’Brien’s 18-year-old son Ben was knocked down while walking home from a bus stop on the A259 last year.

Now she is leading a campaign to get the speed limit reduced from 60mph to 40mph.

And she wants speed cameras to enforce the lower limit.

She says there have been a “string of accidents” between Seaford and Newhaven, including a crash which killed a 68-year-old motorcyclist in September.

Speaking about her own son’s accident, Mrs O’Brien said: “He misjudged the crossing and was hit in the head by a bus.

“Fortunately the bus wasn’t going very fast at the time or he would be dead now.

“He made a full recovery but the thing that really struck me about it was just how incredibly lucky he

had been.

“It has left me feeling really anxious about all the other children who use the road.

“My heart absolutely breaks for all the other people who have been killed or injured in all the other accidents that have happened since then.

“There have been so many accidents, including the recent fatal one. In that week, the road was closed three times.

“Just changing the junction layout isn’t enough. We need a reduction in the speed limit as well.”

Mrs O’Brien says a lower speed limit would only add an extra 51 seconds to journeys but would make a huge improvement to safety.

“It is only a matter of time before someone is knocked over,” she added.

“More people are going to die and more people are going to be injured.

“It really is just a ticking time bomb.”

Brighton & Hove Buses' managing director Martin Harris said: "Unfortunately this young lad stepped out in front of one of our buses while trying to cross a busy stretch of road - there was no pedestrian crossing - and he was looking the wrong way. 

"Our driver swerved to avoid him but he had no time to react and nowhere to go as there was traffic coming from the other direction.

"The bus was travelling at 17mph when it hit him and our CCTV footage shows this clearly.”

East Sussex County Council said lowering the speed limit on the A259 was “not a priority” but it would consider the petition.

“Reducing the speed limit of a road does involve considerable cost,” it said, adding “we have to focus our increasingly limited resources on areas where the need is greatest”.