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Swiss coach crash: 24 schoolchildren still in hospital

Swiss coach crash: 24 schoolchildren still in hospital
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Families of the 28 victims – mostly Belgian and Dutch schoolchildren – who died in a deadly coach crash in Switzerland were preparing to bring the bodies of their loved ones home on Thursday.

Twenty-four youngsters remained in hospital and three were in a coma following the tragedy,which occured when a tour bus slammed into a wall of a motorway tunnel returning from a ski trip.

Having watched video surveillance images, investigators said the coach did not appear to be speeding, no other vehicle was involved and the road was not slippery. They now focus on three possibilities: a technical problem, that the driver may have become ill or human error.

Several Swiss newspapers have questioned the design of a short emergency stopping space inside the motorway tunnel. The coach rammed into a concrete wall at the end of the lay-by, destroying the front third of the vehicle. The French language daily Le Temps asked whether the design should now be modified.

Passers-by laid flowers near the tunnel entrance, as officials in the nearby town of Sierre in the Swiss canton of Valais prepared to hold a memorial mass on Thursday for victims and their families.