Minibus crash in central France leaves 12 dead including at least one child

Vehicle full of Portugese tourists collided with truck shortly after midnight, local officials say

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The Independent Online

A total of 12 people have been killed after a minibus collided with a truck in France, according to local officials. 

A group of Portuguese tourists had been visiting Switzerland and were on board the vehicle when it hit the truck head-on near the central town of Moulins in central France shortly before midnight. 

Emergency services, including nearly 60 firefighters, and local road police rushed to the site of the accident but they were pronounced dead at the scene.

The identities of the tourists have not been released but a child and their parents are believed to be among the dead, local newspaper La Montagne reports

The driver of the bus was seriously injured and taken to a hospital in the town. He had no alcohol in his blood stream, police have said.

Two Italian drivers in the heavy goods vehicle were shaken but unhurt in the crash. 

They told French officials the minivan had swerved into their path on the road - leaving them nowhere to turn. 

A local village hall is being used as a makeshift temporary morgue.