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One dead and dozens injured after Flixbus overturns near Leipzig

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One dead and dozens injured after Flixbus overturns near Leipzig
The scene of the Flixbus crash on Sunday. Photo: DPA
08:57 CEST+02:00
One person died and dozens of passengers were injured after a Flixbus overturned on an Autobahn near Leipzig, eastern Germany.

The coach was travelling from Berlin to Munich on Sunday afternoon at the time of the crash. It veered off the road and overturned on Autobahn 9, around 5:30 pm.

A total of 74 passengers and one driver were on board the coach at the time. One person died in the incident, while all other passengers were injured. Nine people were seriously injured.

A spokesman for police in Weißenfels said on Monday that some of the injuries sustained by passengers were life threatening.

The road was closed for several hours on Sunday night in both directions as the rescue mission and clean-up got underway.

The road was closed during the rescue and clean up. Photo: DPA

Around midnight, police opened the road in the direction of Berlin. Early Monday morning the road was opened in the direction of Munich.

According to local media, including broadcaster RBB and DPA, early indications show that the driver may have momentarily fallen asleep at the wheel, according to transport police.

However, investigations are continuing into the cause of the crash.

According to police, the bus overturned between the Leipzig-West and Bad Dürrenberg junctions. The Flixbus vehicle then remained on its side. No other vehicle was involved in the crash.

Several helicopters and – according to broadcaster MDR – more than 50 ambulances were used to rescue those injured. A rescue tent was set up near the scene to help those with less serious injuries, while others were rushed to the hospital.

The coach on its side. Photo: DPA

A 24-year-old student, who was on the coach, said he saw fragments of the bus in the air when it happened, reported Bavarian news outlet TZ.

"It all happened relatively quickly," he said. Passengers reached for the emergency hammers and smashed the windows to get outside. Fortunately, the student only suffered a small laceration on his head. He praised the emergency services for helping victims so quickly.

In the evening, Flixbus confirmed that the bus had been travelling between Berlin and Munich. The company set up a hotline for concerned relatives to call.

Emergency workers at the scene. Photo: DPA

"Our deepest sympathies go out to the passengers and bus driver affected, as well as to their families and friends,” the company added.

Relatives of affected passengers can contact the free telephone number 0800 30013730 for more information, Flixbus said.

 
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