15 Dec 2017

French school bus in fatal train crash

10:42 am on 15 December 2017

A train and a school bus have collided near Perpignan in southern France, killing at least four children, reports say.

Perpignan in France.

Perpignan in France. Photo: santirf/123RF

Another nine people were reported to be injured on the bus, seven of them seriously in the incident between Millas and Saint-Feliu-d'Amont.

The students on the bus are reported to be between the ages of 11 and 15.

"Emergency services have been mobilised and a crisis co-ordination unit set up," a local official told Reuters.

The crash happened on a section of line between Perpignan and Villefranche-de-Conflent, the local news website l'Independant reports.

A witness who was on the train, named as Barbara, said "it was a very violent crash - it seemed as if the train would derail".

Casualties are being rushed to hospital in Perpignan. Police and emergency medics are at the scene.

Transport Minister Elisabeth Borne called the crash a "terrible accident" and said on Twitter that she was going to the scene, about 850km (530 miles) south of Paris.