Thursday 17 August 2017

What we know so far about the bus crash in Germany

At least 18 are feared dead after the bus burst into flames.

(Nicolas Armer/AP)
(Nicolas Armer/AP)

By Isabel Togoh

Eighteen people are believed to have died after a bus crashed into a lorry and caught fire in Bavaria, south-eastern Germany, near the border to the Czech Republic.

Here is what we know so far.

Who was affected?

Some 48 people were travelling in the vehicle, including two drivers. The collision happened at the end of a motorway traffic jam.

Eighteen people are feared dead and 30 people were injured and taken to hospital. Some sustained serious injuries, German police said.

Officers say the bus, which was badly fire-damaged, was carrying a German senior citizens’ tour group.

The condition of the driver is not yet known.

When did it happen?

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An aerial view showing the scene of the accident (Bodo Schackow/AP)

The bus collided with a lorry near Muenchberg, Bavaria, on the the A9 motorway connecting Berlin and Munich at 7am local time (6am BST). Police believe it was making its way from Saxony in eastern Germany.

Officers were quick to the scene with helicopters, German media reported, as were firefighters and ambulances.

The affected southbound route remains closed for the day.

The bus was reportedly severely burnt by the time firefighters arrived on the scene and put out the fire.

What steps are the police taking?

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Police and rescuers stand near coffins on the A9 motorway (Nicolas Amer/AP)

Police spokeswoman Irene Brandenstein said forensic specialists were undertaking complex and labour intensive work to remove and identify bodies from the charred vehicle.

A contact number is also in place for families to find out more information.

Chancellor Angela Merkel was “deeply shocked” to hear about the incident and offered her condolences to those who were killed and injured, her spokesman said.

Press Association

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