six men and 2 women died on the spot while four others including a little girl are critical in hospital

Indian tourists involved in fatal collision on M1 motorway involving minibus and 2 lorries

Archana Venkatraman

A fatal crash on Saturday on UK's busy motorway M1 involving two lorries and a minibus has ended up with at least eight people dead and four critically injured including a 5-year-old girl.

Amongst the passengers in the minibus from Nottingham, were Indian tourists visiting the UK, the police confirmed.

The crushed minibus that carried Indian visitor passengers after the collision
The crushed minibus that carried Indian visitor passengers after the collision

The tragic incident occurred just after 3am BST on Saturday – the start of the long bank holiday weekend, on the motorway near Milton Keynes. All the six men and two women who died at the scene were on the minibus from Nottingham area that had Indians. In addition, a little girl, aged 5, two women and a man are currently being treated in hospital with life-threatening or serious injuries.

The two lorry drivers – one 31-year-old from Worcestershire and another, a 53-year-old from Stoke-on-Trent, are under police custody for dangerous driving and for driving while over the legal alcohol limit.

“Officers are working to inform the next of kin of the people who died and specially-trained family liaison officers will be offering them their support," said Chief Inspector Henry Parsons, from the Joint Operations Unit for Roads Policing. "Some of those involved were visiting the UK from India and we are working to keep families abroad informed."

M1 crash of minibus and 2 lorries kills 8 and critically injures 4 . Indian tourists in the minibus
M1 crash of minibus and 2 lorries kills 8 and critically injures 4 . Indian tourists in the minibus

“This collision was deeply distressing for the members of the public who witnessed it, along with the emergency service workers who attended and displayed high levels of professionalism.

Ongoing rescue work at the site of the M1 fatal crash
Ongoing rescue work at the site of the M1 fatal crash

Thames Valley Police has highly trained collision investigators who, over the coming weeks and months, will work to determine what caused this tragedy.

Disturbing pictures from the accident scene show deep damage to the lorries involved - a FedEx vehicle and one belonging to AIM Logistics and a nearly crushed minibus.

The vehicles were all travelling in the same direction (southbound) between junctions 15 and 14, Thames Valley police said.

The emergency services and Highways England attended the scene and a closure was in place on the southbound carriageway between junction 15 and junction 14. This reopened shortly before 1pm and traffic congestion in the area is clearing.

Anyone with any information should contact the 24-hour Thames Valley Police enquiry centre on 101 quoting URN 203 26/8.

 

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