A coach driver who was killed when his vehicle crashed on the M53 carrying pupils from two West Kirby schools has been named.
40-year-old Stephen Shrimpton passed away after the bus reportedly struck a reservation near junction 5 and overturned on Friday morning. On board were more than 50 children heading to Calday Grange Grammar and West Kirby Grammar Schools.
In a tribute, issued by Merseyside Police, his family said: “Stephen was a loving husband and father to his wife and his wonderful children, a caring and thoughtful man who would always prioritise others over himself.
“Stephen will be sadly missed by all his friends and family. The family have requested privacy at this devastating time.”
Jessica Baker, who is understood to have attended West Kirby Grammar School, also died in the incident.
A steady stream of pupils have been entering the school today, carrying flowers to pay tribute to the 15-year-old. Police say her family have requested their privacy is respected at this time.
Post mortems will be carried out next week to establish the causes of death.
Those hurt include a 14 year-old boy who has suffered life changing injuries and remains in hospital. The other casualties are all in stable conditions.
An investigation into the incident is ongoing and police are appealing for witnesses and dash-cam footage.
Detective Sergeant Andy Roper, of the Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: “The thoughts of everyone at Merseyside Police remain with those who were affected by the tragic incident yesterday.
“The families of Stephen and Jessica are being supported by specially trained officers and we are working with both schools and Wirral and Cheshire West Councils to ensure the necessary trauma support is in place for the children who were affected.
“We continue to investigate the circumstances of this incident and we are appealing for anyone who witnessed this incident or have any information to please let us know.
“We also urge those who were driving near the incident to check your dashcam footage. Any information no matter how small could help the investigation.
“Motorists are also advised that the section of the M53 that was closed following the incident yesterday has now reopened.”
Anyone with information about the collision is asked to call the Matrix Serious Collision Investigation Unit on (0151) 777 5747 or SCIU@merseyside.police.uk or contact @MerPolCC on Twitter or Merseyside Police Contact Centre on Facebook quoting reference 23000944471.