A BUS driver from Chippenham, who hit the headlines in October for using his bus to shield an injured woman lying in the middle of a road in Bath, has died following a car crash on Christmas Eve.

The man, named locally as Nana Boateng, was travelling home from visiting his family in the area when his silver Ford Fiesta collided with a heavy goods vehicle on the A429 near to the Kingway Bridge in Hullavington at around 4am on Christmas Eve. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The road was closed in both directions between Malmesbury and Junction 17 of the M4 for around eight hours following the accident.

Mr Boateng’s colleagues at First Bus, where he had worked for the last three years, learned of his death the following morning via a staff memo.

“It is with very great regret that we advise all members of staff that our friend and colleague Nana Boateng has died in the early hours of Christmas Eve,” the First Bus memo said.

“Nana was visiting family and was returning home when he was involved in a tragic accident in his car.

“A popular man, Nana worked at the Bath depot for three years.

“We shall all miss his infectious smile and personality. Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.”

Earlier this year Mr Boateng was dubbed a hero when he cautiously inched his double-decker in front of a woman, who had collaposed in Upper Bristol Road in October to protect her from oncoming traffic.

His work ethic, attitude and friendliness made him a driver to remember and dozens of friends, colleagues and passengers took to social media to share their tributes of the Chippenham man.

Thomas Husband wrote: "A tragic loss to our team at First Bath - perhaps people will remember that we are actually human," while Rudyl Nahine wrote: "He will be sorely missed. He is always cheerful and warmly greets you with his smile. Rest in Peace mate and keep smiling up there."

Tariq Selassie added: "Saddened to hear of the loss of such a positive force in the world. Nana will always be remembered as a hero. Truly one of a kind!"

Anyone with information about the crash should call PC 1106 Rabczak on 101, or via Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.