Pedestrian dies after she is struck by bus on M2 motorway
Mystery surrounds how a woman pedestrian killed after being hit by a bus came to be on the M2 motorway yesterday morning.
The woman died at the scene after being struck by a Translink bus at around 5.50am close to Sandyknowes as it headed northbound.
There is no pedestrian access to the motorway where the collision happened.
A number of other vehicles pulled onto the hard shoulder following the horrific incident.
The death resulted in traffic chaos for early morning commuters as police closed the motorway from Greencastle to Sandyknowes to help with their investigations.
It caused tailbacks for hours as commuter traffic ground to a halt, particularly vehicles coming off the Sandyknowes roundabout heading into the city.
Traffic returned to normal by lunchtime yesterday.
The woman, who has not yet been identified by the PSNI, was the 43rd person to die on Northern Ireland's roads this year.
The bus involved was one of Translink's Airport 300 service vehicles and runs from Belfast's Europa bus station to Templepatrick and Belfast International Airport.
It is understood that it was being driven by a male driver, and was carrying four passengers.
The driver and passengers are not believed to have sustained any injuries.
Following the incident Translink issued a statement, saying: "Around 5.50am this morning a female pedestrian was involved in a collision with the 300 service on the M2 close to Sandyknowes.
"Four passengers were on the bus.
"The emergency services attended the scene and the PSNI and Translink are currently investigating the incident."
A spokesman added that the company offered internal help and support to its drivers following tragic collisions such as this.
It is not known whether the passengers were able to make their departures or were delayed in order to help with the police investigation after the accident.
Last night Belfast's Deputy Lord Mayor Guy Spence, who represents the area, paid his respects to the woman's family.
"This is a devastating loss of life and it's still unknown how the woman pedestrian came to be on the motorway, but I offer my condolences to her family," he said.
Inspector Rosie Leech is leading the investigation and appealed for information from anyone who may have witnessed the incident.
She said: "The circumstances of the collision are now under investigation and we are keen to hear from witnesses. The number to call is 101."