FRANCE – At least 42 pensioners are dead after a bus carrying the elderly day-trippers collided head-on with a truck and caught fire near Bordeaux early on Friday, in France’s worst road crash in more than 30 years.
Another eight people were injured in the collision on a country road near Puisseguin in the Gironde region about 60 km (35 miles) east of Bordeaux, the local prefect’s office said in a statement.
The bus was carrying about 50 seniors south to the Bearn region from their homes in the village of Petit Palais and surrounding hamlets, all just a few kilometres away from the crash site, said officials.
A spokesman for the interior ministry said that, as far as he could tell, all the passengers were French and from the region.
President Francois Hollande, speaking on a visit to Athens, said he had been “plunged into sadness by the tragedy” and Prime Minister Manuel Valls and other ministers were heading to the crash site.