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18 missing in German bus crash ‘probably dead’: police

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At least 18 people who are unaccounted for after a bus crash in southern Germany are believed to have died as a fire engulfed the vehicle, police said.

The bus burst into flames after colliding with a truck near the Bavarian town of Stammbach on Monday.

“Thirty passengers were taken to hospitals, some with serious injuries. The others are believed to have died in the burning tour bus,” which had been carrying 48 people, police said in a statement.

A German minister said that 11 bodies had been retrieved from the crash site so far.

Some 200 emergency workers were deployed to the site, including firefighters, rescue workers and police, while south-bound traffic on the motorway remained blocked.

Earlier in the day, police spokesman Juergen Stadter told local media that there was “only a glimmer of hope” that some of the missing would be found alive outside the charred bus.

“Maybe someone ran away in shock,” he said.

Another police spokeswoman, Anne Hoefer, told AFP news agency that the passengers were “old people” and that some may not have made it out of the bus.

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