A 30-year-old woman was left with serious injuries after her vehicle was involved in a head-on crash with a bus on the A131 in Bulmer.
The accident happened outside the Bulmer Fox pub on Tuesday, shortly after 6pm.
The first person on the scene was Eddie Brown, who lives nearby.
“I heard a bang outside and I thought ‘that’s a big one’,” said the 50-year-old. “She’s lucky to be alive.”
Mr Brown, who was joined by an off-duty paramedic, helped to support the driver, who he said was in a lot of pain, before emergency services arrived. The woman had to be cut free by firefighters.
An East of England Ambulance Service spokesman said she was taken to Colchester Hospital with serious injuries, with fractures to her leg and arm.
In total, Mr Brown said there were more than 70 emergency service personnel in attendance, including four fire engines.
Mr Brown, a former firefighter himself, said the stretch of road outside the pub was an accident black-spot, with 30 accidents in the last three years. In one crash, a car had ended up in his own front garden.
“It’s driving us insane,” he said. “In the last three months, there have been four or five crashes.
“This week’s one was by far the worst.”