Woman dies after minibus crash on UK motorway

Six air ambulances attend after bus on way to hen party hits lorry on way to Liverpool

The scene where a woman  died in a collision on the westbound carriage of the M62 near Pontefract in West Yorkshire between a lorry and a minibus today. Photograph: Lynne Cameron/PA Wire

The scene where a woman died in a collision on the westbound carriage of the M62 near Pontefract in West Yorkshire between a lorry and a minibus today. Photograph: Lynne Cameron/PA Wire

 

A woman has died after a minibus carrying women to a hen party was involved in a crash with a lorry, police said today.

The minibus was on its way to Liverpool when it was involved in the collision at junction 32 of the westbound carriageway of the M62 near Pontefract at about 11.30am, leaving some 19 people injured, six seriously.

The driver of the lorry, believed to be a local man, has been arrested in connection with the incident, West Yorkshire Police said today.

Substitute emergency services - including six air ambulances - were called at 11.30am to junction 32 after the crash near the Xscape leisure park.

Police said the incident had left the motorway closed in both directions and advised motorists to avoid the area.

Assistant Chief Constable Craig Guildford, of West Yorkshire Police, said: “This is a significant incident with a number of casualties and as a result of this we have had to close the motorway to allow emergency services to safely get to and free those who are injured.

“We realise this will cause disruption and I would ask drivers to bear with us and avoid the motorway in that area as there will be significant delays.

“Emergency services remain on the scene and will reopen lanes of the M62 in the area as soon as we can do so safely, but clearly the priority at this stage has been recovering those who are injured.

“Anyone who is concerned about a family member or who has witnessed the collision itself is asked to contact West Yorkshire Police on 101 for information.”

Emergency call

A spokeswoman for the Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust said: “We received an emergency call at 11.31am today to reports of a serious collision between a mini-coach and an HGV at junction 32 of the M62, close to Castleford, West Yorkshire.

“Due to the scale of the incident we have enacted our major incident plan and dispatched a number of resources to the scene including ambulances, our hazardous area response team, doctors and air ambulance.

“Ambulance clinicians are providing treatment at the scene and are working closely with their emergency service colleagues. At this time the number of patients is unknown.”

Police appealed for any witnesses to contact police, as well as any family members who may have any concerns.

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Dave Walton said that firefighters had remarked that the crash was “the worst they had seen in a number of years”.

“The crews that arrived described to me a very difficult scene, some of them saying it was the worst they’d seen in a number of years and some very experienced fire officers have been attending this scene.

“However, they very quickly got to work and brought in a range of equipment including cutting and lifting equipment to effect as quick a rescue as we could of those casualties who were still in the vehicle.”

PA