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Three Britons injured and two people dead after tourist bus smashes into a tree in Malta

Three Britons, including two children, are among 50 people injured after a fatal bus crash in Malta, local police have said. 

A 37-year-old Spanish woman and a Belgian man, 62, were killed after the open-top double decker smashed into a low hanging tree branch.

The crash in the southern town of Zurrieq left a dozen children injured.

The three British people taken to hospital were a 44-year-old man and two boys aged six and eight.

Malta’s health minister, Chris Fearne, said most of the passengers were from the UK or Belgium.

A German woman, 31, an Italian woman, 72, and a 35-year-old man whose nationality is unknown were also taken to the Mater Dei hospital for treatment.

The open top tourist bus smashed into a low hanging tree branch in Zurrieq
Image:
The open top tourist bus smashed into a low hanging tree branch in Zurrieq

Emergency service workers used cranes to lift the injured onto stretchers from the top deck.

Maltese police said: “These persons were also certified as suffering from grievous injuries.”

Officers were called out at around 4.15pm local time on Monday.

Police said a preliminary investigation showed the 24-year-old man driving the bus had lost control before crashing into the branch.

The driver is reported to have not suffered any injuries.

Rescue workers were seen lifting injured people off the bus with cranes
Image:
Rescue workers were seen lifting injured people off the bus with cranes

Local media reports suggested tree branches may have been lower than usual because of damage from gale-force winds on Sunday night.

Police said their investigation is ongoing.

A spokeswoman for the 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.”

Zurrieq is a popular tourist destination outside the capital Valletta that is famous for its ruins.

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