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French investigators wait to speak to bus and train drivers after fatal collision

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French investigators wait to speak to bus and train drivers after fatal collision

French investigators wait to speak to bus and train drivers after fatal collision
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French police are waiting to interview the drivers of a train and bus involved in a horrific crash near Perpignan that is now known to have left six children dead.

The coach, which was carrying pupils aged between 13 and 17 from a nearby secondary school, was cut in half when it was hit by a train at a level crossing between between Millas and Saint-Féliu-d'Amont.

Twenty people were injured, 11 of them critically, but both drivers escaped serious harm.

French Prime Minister Édouard Philippe, who visited the scene, said that it was difficult to identify the victims. 

He said: "Getting accurate information is made difficult by questions surrounding the identification of deceased persons and some injured persons. 

"The process of identification has started and it is extremely difficult."

President Emmanuel Macron tweeted his condolences, saying all his thoughts were with the victims and their families and that the state was fully mobilised to help them.

The bus, which was carrying pupils home from school, was on the level crossing when it was hit by the train, which was travelling from Perpignan at around 80km/h.

Visibility was described as good, although there are conflicting reports as to whether the barrier preventing traffic from crossing was raised or down when the train was coming past.