24 injured as tourist bus crashes in Barcelona

Barcelona (AFP) - At least 24 people, most of them tourists, were injured early on Wednesday when a coach crashed in Barcelona on its way to the airport, the emergency services said.

Three passengers were seriously injured when the bus crashed at around 3:10 am (0110 GMT) during heavy rain, an emergency services spokesman said. Those hurt included nine people from Britain and Ireland,

The coach had left the coastal resort of Lloret de Mar, 75 kilometres (46 miles) north of Barcelona, and was crossing through the city en route to El Prat airport.

It was travelling on a ring road which passes close to the waterfront when it crashed.

Ten of the injured passengers remained in hospital, including two 51-year-old women who were in serious condition although their lives were not in danger, the regional Catalan government said in a statement.

Among the injured were seven tourists from Britain, four Lithuanians, three from Belarus, two from Germany, two from Ireland and a Pole, a city official told regional public radio.

There were also seven Spaniards on the coach, six of them tourists and the driver, he said.

Fifteen sustained light injuries, while six were said to be in moderate condition.

Police said the driver tested negative for alcohol and drugs. They have opened an investigation into the causes of the accident.

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