Newtongrange minibus crash: victim named

Ross Barker was pronounced dead at the scene
Ross Barker was pronounced dead at the scene

The man who died after a minibus overturned in the Scottish Borders has been identified.

Ross Jones Barker (59) from Port Seton, was travelling from Newtongrange to Kelso with 22 other passengers and the driver in a private minibus yesterday (Saturday, December 29).

The bus overturned while travelling on the A6089 between Carfraemill and Gordon around 10.50am. Mr Barker was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police inquiries into the accident are ongoing.

Prayers will be said in Newtongrange Parish Church tonight. Community groups from Newtongrange have taken to social media to express their condolences.

Police Scotland confirmed that of the 23 other men also on board, 14 were taken to Borders General Hospital, eight to the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, and one was airlifted to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Glasgow. The men on the minibus were aged between 24 and 75.

Six remain in hospital with serious injuries, but all are considered stable at this time.

The road was closed in both directions until 9pm last night to allow the Road Policing Unit to conduct investigations at the scene and for the vehicle to be recovered.

An investigation remains underway to establish the full circumstances surrounding the accident.

Chief Inspector Steven Duncan of the Lothians & Scottish Borders Police Division, said: “This has been an outing among friends and associates which has turned into tragedy.

“Our sympathies are with Ross’ family, who have respectfully requested privacy during this terrible ordeal as they try to come to terms with their loss. Our thoughts also remain with all those injured and their families.

“I want to take this opportunity to thank our colleagues in the Scottish Ambulance Service and Scottish Fire & Rescue Service, who provided vital help in responding to this incident.

“We’re also very grateful to the NHS, Scottish Borders Council and the public for their support of officers and all those affected.”