[All updates, videos and photos below.] Six people, including children, have been killed in a deadly crash between a truck and a bus filled with chareidi passengers.
The collision took place on Israel’s Highway 1.
Sources indicate that the truck was parked on the shoulder of the highway when Mehadrin bus #402 from Yerushalayim to Bnei Brak collided with it, slicing the bus on its side.
The collision took place near the Latrun Interchange, between Ramle and Modiin.
Over 15, and as many as 25, people have been injured, some very seriously. Magen David Adom paramedics are treating victims at the scene and transporting them to hospitals.
The niftarim, sources say, include three siblings.
Several people were trapped inside the bus.
Update: Terrorism hasn’t been ruled out. Passengers on the bus said that it appeared like the driver of the truck caused the accident. The matter is being investigated.
The 40-year-old truck driver, an East Jerusalem resident, has been detained by police.
Update, 7:35 p.m. IL: Health Minister Yaakov Litzman is currently at the scene. He called the accident “horrific.”
“The bus collided with a truck transporting marble plates, which was parked on the side of the road,” said Zaka spokesman Motty Burkchin. “A part of the bus got ripped in two. People were thrown into the air while the bus was moving.”
Update, 7:51 p.m. IL: Some of the victims were taken to Tel Hashomer Medical Center and Shaarei Tzedek, while others were transported to Kaplan Hospital in Rechovot and Assaf Harofeh in Rishon L’Tzion. Three lightly injured passengers were taken to Wolfson Medical Center in Cholon.
Reports indicate that the double-length truck – carrying building materials – was parked on the side of the road. The bus driver tried to stop the bus, but was unable to do so in time to avoid the collision.
Update, 8:10 p.m. IL: The police spokesman is saying now that this was an accident and not a terrorist attack.
The bus left Yerushalayim for Bnei Brak at about 5:40 p.m. IL.
It is now being reported that there are, r”l, 7 casualties, including 3 children.
Amongst those hurt, 11 are in critical or serious condition, 3 are in moderate condition, and 15 sustained light injuries.
Update, 8:21 p.m. IL: Bambi reports that a brother of the truck driver says that two minutes before the accident, his brother called him to say that his truck broke down. This would seem to jibe with the claim that it was not a terror-related incident.
Update, 8:38 p.m. IL: Reports of another casualty, who passed away after being transported to a hospital, brings the total confirmed niftarim to 6.
David Steger – Matzav.com Israel