April 09, 2018
TWO people have died and 50 others - including three Britons - have been left injured after a tourist bus smashed into low-lying tree branches in Zurrieq, Malta.
Malta bus crash: 2 dead and 50 injured as bus hits tree – 2 UK kids in critical condition
Two tourists, a 62-year-old Belgian man and a 37-year-old Spanish woman died at the scene, health minister Chris Fearne confirmed.
Local authorities said three Britons, two boys aged six and eight and a 44-year-old man, were among six people taken to hospital after the crash when a double decker bus hit tree branches on Valetta Road.
Mr Fearne told One News, that 30 of the injured people had been taken to Mater Dei Hospital.
A further 19 of those who were injured have been taken to health centres.
At least 12 children were injured in the accident.
A 72-year-old Italian woman and a 31-year-old German woman are also in critical condition.
Around ten ambulances have arrived on the scene to help out the injured passengers.
On their Facebook page the Malta Police Force said: "These persons were also certified as suffering from grievous injuries."
A spokeswoman for the British Foreign Office said: "We are urgently seeking more information from the Maltese authorities following an incident involving a bus.
"We stand ready to provide assistance to any British people involved."
Malta bus crash: 2 dead and 50 injured as bus hits tree – 2 UK kids in critical condition
Surgeons and doctors at Mater Dei hospital are also on standby to help.
The bus is reportedly from a firm called Dennis Trident, and was being driven by a 24-year-old man at the time of the accident.
The Independent newspaper in Malta reported that it was the driver’s first day on the job.
Photographs show that the front guardrail of the bus took the brunt of the impact.
Malta bus crash: 2 dead and 50 injured as bus hits tree – 2 UK kids in critical condition
Passengers who were sitting on the upper floor were injured.
Mr Fearne confirmed that most of the passengers suffered injuries to the upper parts of their body. Some also sustained head and neck injuries.
Harrowing pictures show one of the victims being taken off the top of the bus in a stretcher.
People with bandages on could be seen walking down the road away from the crash.
Others, who had difficulty moving were taken off the bus with a crane.
The Maltese government has contacted the embassies of those injured.
A centre for relatives has also been set up at the hospital.
Meanwhile, the country has made a desperate plea for blood donations.
Malta bus crash: 2 dead and 50 injured as bus hits tree – 2 UK kids in critical condition
Malta’s police have launched an investigation into the crash and have said that their investigation is ongoing.
The police said the magisterial inquiry, will be headed by duty magistrate Monica Vella.
Malta’s Prime Minister Joseph Muscat has expressed his condolences to the victims’ families during a session in parliament.
He thanked the emergency services for their quick response.
Malta bus crash: 2 dead and 50 injured as bus hits tree – 2 UK kids in critical condition
Mater Dei hospital has urged people not to go to A&E unless absolutely necessary.
Howver, the bus crash is the second in Malta this year involving trees.
In February, a driver was killed when his car was crushed by a tree during windy weather.
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