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Driver involved in accident thanks good Samaritan coffee shop owner

Dana Selassie, left, is thanked for her allowing Josette Matthew, centre, to calm down at her coffee shop Buna after an accident. Also pictured is Dr Selassie’s son, Malahku (Photograph supplied)

A woman who was involved in a serious traffic accident in front of a coffee shop returned to the scene last week to thank the owner for her assistance after the crash.

Josette Matthew said that Dana Selassie, the owner of Buna Gallery and Coffee House in Sandys, and family members rushed to help after a head-on collision left a motorcyclist trapped under a bus.

Ms Matthew, who gave the Selassies a bouquet of flowers last Sunday, said: “Dana’s café was not open that evening, but she and her son just happened to be there and sprang into action by assisting me and the rider of the bike at the accident scene.

“She also opened her gate so I could calm down from all of the shock and anxiety.”

Ms Matthew added: “My car has been hit before, but this accident changed my life.

“It reminded me to be more mindful of my surroundings.”

Dr Selassie, who lives in Sandys, said she and her family were preparing the coffee shop in January for its opening, when they heard a bang.

She said: “We thought someone had driven into the building, that’s how loud it was.

“I sent my son outside and as he’s standing at the door he goes 'Mom, something’s happened’.”

Dr Selassie said that a motorcyclist had been involved in a head-on collision with a car and was left pinned under a bus.

She added that she ran to the motorcyclist when she realised he was underneath the bus and tried her best to keep him calm.

Dr Selassie said: “His nose was bleeding and the wheel of the bus was just by his face.

“I couldn’t tell how bad it was, but he just kept saying ’get this guy off of me, get this guy off of me’.

She added: “I just held his hand and started talking to him – I found out he had a child on the way so I knew if this went poorly it would be really bad.

“I was trying to get the bus driver to not move because every time somebody moved on the bus it went up and down and it crushed him more.”

Dr Selassie spent up to 45 minutes keeping the man calm before he was freed by emergency workers and taken to hospital.

She said she offered free coffee and tea to emergency personnel and other road-users held up by the accident.

Dr Selassie added: “It was almost like a war zone – it was cold, it was starting to rain and the traffic was backed up, so the people who couldn’t get out were basically just stuck in front of my shop.

“So my son and I just did what we know – we made coffee for everybody.

“We were just trying to make sure that everybody stayed calm.”

Dr Selassie said that, although she had not seen the motorcyclist since the incident, she later learnt his injuries were not serious and he had made a full recovery.

She added that it was a “miracle” that he had survived the ordeal.

Dr Selassie said: “He survived after getting hit by a bus in front of a church next to our coffee shop, so I guess the angels were definitely looking out for him that night.”

She added: “There was something about the community spirit of everybody coming together and just sort of looking out for each other.

“This definitely shows that the spirit of community is still alive, even in the midst of the pandemic and the negativity that we hear all the time.”

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Published June 12, 2021 at 7:56 am (Updated June 12, 2021 at 7:56 am)

Driver involved in accident thanks good Samaritan coffee shop owner

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