Jessica Dunning
Tragic: Jessica Dunning was mown down and killed as she crossed the road to reach a bus stop on her way to college

A 16-year-old girl died after being struck by four cars and a double-decker bus when the drivers mistook her body for a dead animal, an inquest heard.

Jessica Dunning was crossing a dimly-lit road to get to her bus stop when she was mown down by a Mazda MX5 on her way to college at 7am on December 17 last year.

As she lay seriously injured on the A158 in Skegness, Lincolnshire, she was crushed by multiple vehicles who all failed to notice her body in the street.

Emergency services rushed to treat the pretty teen but she was pronounced dead at the scene as a result of serious head trauma.

On Wednesday the driver of the Mazda told an inquest he had failed to see the college student because there was no street lighting on the road.

SWNSJessica Dunning
Fatal: The pretty teenager was struck by four cars and a bus after drivers failed to spot her lying in the road

Giving evidence at Spilsby Coroner’s Court, Peter Whitfield said: “It was so dark.

“There was no street lighting.

“There was a bump and I thought it was an animal.

“I immediately stopped.

“A man came and told me to go back to the car and an ambulance came.”

Coroner for Central Lincolnshire Stuart Fisher said he would be urging the local authority to install street lighting on the road to prevent a repeat of the tragedy.

He said: “I propose to ask the county council to install lights to the west of South View for the safety of pedestrians and in line with a new holiday park being built in the area.”

The collision happened just yards from South View Caravan Park, where Jessica lived with her park manager dad Ben, 38.

SWNSJessica Dunning
Sudden: An inquest into her death heard the teenager would not have survived the initial impact

The court was told she had been making her way to Lincoln College where she was studying A-Level’s in Law and Sociology when she was struck by the Mazda.

Her body was also hit by another MX5, a Citroen C3, a Ford Focus as well as a bus and the inquest heard she would not have survived the initial impact.

The coroner also read a statement on her dad’s behalf which said: “Jessica was a genuine, nice and trustworthy girl.

“She had her whole life to look forward to and we will all miss her.

“This has left a great hole in our lives.”

Since the horrific smash, concerned residents have campaigned to get the speed limit in the road lowered from 60mph to 40mph.

Scene: The accident occurred near the South View Caravan Park just off the A158

Carol Crutchlow, 60, who runs Poppy’s Restaurant close to the scene said: “I have been here for 16 years and in that time I have seen lots of accidents, including tragic fatalities.

“The road is far too fast.”

Speaking at the time, Kim Chafer, director of advanced education at Lincoln College, said: “We are saddened to hear of the death of Jess Dunning who was studying A-Levels at Lincoln College and our thoughts are with her family and friends at this very sad time.

“Jess was a lovely girl; she worked hard, was a popular student and enjoyed her classes in Law.

“She was a key contributor in her Sociology class group and always had a laugh with her friends in class activities and debates.

“A bright light has been extinguished, she touched the lives of so many people at Lincoln College and she will be greatly missed.

“We are devastated by the news of Jess’s passing.”

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