Bus drivers 'outraged' over using vehicle teen stabbed to death on

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Drivers outraged for being forced to use bus teen stabbed to death on

Furious bus drivers have hit out after being forced to drive a 'death bus' that a schoolgirl was stabbed to death on - after a company disguised it and returned it to service.

Christina Edkins, 16, was stabbed to death in a random attack as she sat on the top deck of the Number 9 National Express West Midlands bus on 7 March.

But bus chiefs ordered the crime scene, dubbed the 'death bus' by drivers, to be hosed down, refitted and thrown back into the mix - leaving members of the public oblivious.

Despite the horror killing, National Express staff have been ordered to carry on as normal.

One worker, who asked to remain anonymous, told Caters News: "We were shocked to hear the bus was being allowed back into service, we all know which one it is now but at first bosses kept it quiet.

"Nobody wants to be the one asked to drive the Death Bus - I certainly don't want to. But there is little choice we have to do it, we can't just refuse to work.

"Members of the public have no idea about the sickening nightmare that happened on it."

Paranoid schizophrenic Phillip Simelane lashed out as Christina travelled to school in Halesowen, Birmingham, during the morning rush-hour.

The 23-year-old killer, from Walsall, West Mids, was on the Number 9 bus for two-and-a-half hours before he stalked the teenager and attacked. He pleaded guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

However, the double decker has been re-registered and changed fleet numbers, and its number plates have also been switched.

Work was carried out to repaint, refurbish seats, fittings and fixtures, and transfer it from Pensnett, Dudley, to a garage in South Birmingham.

It still operates as one of the city's busiest bus services, carrying hundreds of passengers daily as the Number 50 service.

The driver added: "There are parents, toddlers, elderly people, commuters and schoolchildren who board the bus daily.

"How many of them would be pleased to hear they unwittingly travelled on this bus?"

Despite staff members' concerns, National Express insist all work was done out of respect to Christina's parents.

A spokesman for National Express West Midlands said: "We worked with the police family liaison officer immediately after the incident to ensure the vehicle involved was moved to another part of Birmingham, re-painted, re-numbered and given a new number plate.

"This was done out of respect for the family, which they welcomed."

The company refused to comment on panicked drivers being made to get behind the wheel, refusing to acknowledge concerns have been raised.

The spokesman added: "We have a good relationship with our trade union and no representation has been made regarding drivers' concerns on this issue.

"National Express do not intend to remove the bus from the roads and its service is running as normal."

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