At least a dozen people, including nine child acrobats, are undersood to have died in a road crash in Siberia.
Police in the Khanty-Mansiysk district of Russia said that 12 people, including the nine members of a children’s acrobatics team died on a road which links two oil towns in Siberia, while a further 20 people suffered injuries in the accident.
The driver of the bus is understood to have lost control before colliding with a lorry which was heading in the opposite direction. The team had been at a contest in the region’s capital. Road traffic investigators are now looking into what could have caused the accident. Factors being looked at are adverse weather conditions and low visibility. At the time of the crash, temperatures had dipped to as low as -17C and there were also reports of blizzard conditions.
Emergency services were called and high ranking medics were sent from Moscow to help treat survivors of the crash. Meanwhile, the governor of Khanty-Mansiysk Natalya Komarova has been to both the scene of the accident and the hospital where survivors hve been taken.
She said: “The injured are in a grave condition. The doctors are doing their best.” However, there are fears that the death toll could still rise. Both drivers are understood to have got out of the crash with minor injuries and have both tested negative for alcohol.
In total, 10 ambulances were sent out to try to help in the treatment of those injured. There are conflicting reports about the number of children who have died, with some putting the figure at nine, and others saying the number is ten. There were said to be 29 people on board the bus in total, with all but three of them being children. Siberia has suffered a number of fatal bus crashes in recent years.