Thursday, 7 Dec 2023

'Multiple casualties' after school bus filled with children overturns on M53

A coach being used as a school bus crashed onto its side on a motorway on Friday morning, causing several ‘casualties’, authorities have said.

Emergency services rushed to the M53 near Liverpool after the crash, which forced traffic to be halted in both directions.

A driver tweeted a photo of the vehicle lying on his side and described kids in school uniform ‘escaping from the back window’.

It’s thought the coach collided with a reservation and overturned.

Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service confirmed there were ‘a number of casualties’ but did not immediately confirm their severity.

A police statement suggested the driver and a number of children were still trapped in the wreckage more than two hours after the crash.

Another Twitter user who claimed to have driven past the ‘awful’ scene said they saw ‘kids standing on the hard shoulder’.

Local councillor Sherin Akhtar said the bus was travelling to two different schools in the Wirral, Calday Grange Grammar and West Kirby Grammar.

Both schools said they were ‘aware of the situation’ and ‘actively gathering details and assisting affected students and their families’.

Around 10 police vehicles, four fire engines, five ambulances and an air ambulance were dispatched to the scene.

The incident took place near junction 5 northbound and the M53 is ‘likely to remain closed for some time’ in both directions between junction 5 and junction 4, Merseyside Police said.

In a statement, the force added: ‘We can confirm that emergency services are on the M53 in Hooton following a collision involving a bus on the motorway.

‘Just after 8am we received a report that a bus had struck a reservation on Junction 5 of the M53. Junctions 3-5 of the M53 are closed in both directions.

‘Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service is currently ensuring the safe removal of passengers and the driver, and North West Ambulance Service are at the scene attending to anyone requiring treatment.

‘Motorists are advised to avoid the area and find alternative routes, and we advise people to remain patient while the incident is ongoing. Enquiries are ongoing and updates will be issued as soon as possible.

‘Please note this incident is ongoing and we are urging people to refrain from speculating or publishing any sensitive information that could be distressing online or via social media platforms.’

This is a breaking news story, more to follow soon… Check back shortly for further updates.

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