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Belgian coach crash in Swiss tunnel kills 28

At least 28 people – including 22 children – have been killed in a coach crash in a tunnel in Switzerland. Another 24 children were injured in the crash near Sierre, in the canton of Valais, close to the border with Italy.

The coach, carrying 52 people back to the Belgian towns of Lommel and¬†Heverlee following a skiing trip, struck a wall in the tunnel head-on late on Tuesday. Belgian PM Elio Di Rupo said it was “a tragic day for all of Belgium”.

The bus crashed shortly after 21:00 (20:00 GMT) on Tuesday.

In Brussels, the Belgian foreign ministry said most of the children were aged around 12, and the bus was one of three hired by a Christian group. The other two reached Belgium safely. The children had spent a week skiing in Val d’Anniviers in the Swiss Alps. Those on board the bus that crashed were from the Stekske primary school in Lommel, close to the Dutch border, and from St Lambertus in Heverlee, near Leuven, with Belgian media saying the numbers were roughly even. Ten of the children involved are Dutch, the Dutch foreign ministry said, with all but one of them living in Belgium.

Belgian Transport Minister Melchior Wathelet said the company that ran the coach, Toptours, had “an excellent reputation”. He said: “The drivers had arrived the night before and had rested during the day before departure. It seems that the law on driving and rest periods has been respected.” Both the drivers were among the dead.

Distraught relatives have been arriving at the schools in Belgium, with identification of the dead and injured still not complete.

Read the full article on BBC News

Category: World News |

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Last updated December 10, 2016 at 2:52 PM
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