A 10-year-old girl has died and two members of her family are in a critical condition after a crash between a bus and a car yesterday.
A bus travelling from Castletown towards Port Erin and a silver BMW coming in the opposite direction were involved in a collision on the main Castletown to Port Erin road near its junction with the Ballakaighen straight at about 3.40pm.
Although not yet formally confirmed, the child is believed to be Alexis French, who was travelling in the BMW car with her parents and younger brother.
Alexis was pronounced dead at the hospital at 4.26pm having been rushed there by ambulance from the scene.
Two other occupants of the car remain in a critical condition at hospitals in the North West of England while her mother who has serious injuries is stable and being treated at Noble’s Hospital.
Alexis was a year six student at Ballaugh Primary School.
Support is being put into place for pupils and staff tomorrow (Monday).
Headteacher Dr Graeme Cushine said everyone at the school would be shocked and deeply saddened by the news. Their thoughts were with Alexis’s family.
He described Alexis as a popular, bright and hard working pupil who had many friends. She loved learning, both inside and outside the classroom. Alexis was a school librarian and was accomplished at judo.
Inspector Jed Bibby, who is leading the investigation, said: ‘The response from the island’s community has been immense, on a professional level through the emergency services and medical staff at Noble’s through to the heartfelt comments on social media and offers of help for the family.
‘The level and scale of the incident really has brought out the best in our community.
‘Officers are still working to establish the facts and speak to those involved and family liaison officers are working closely with the next of kin offering welfare and support.’
There were understood to have been seven passengers on the bus at the time of the collision which included three teenaged children along with the bus driver.
Five of the passengers including the driver were treated at Noble’s suffering from shock and more minor injuries and all but one have been released following treatment at A&E for fracture injuries.
The section of road between Castletown and Port Erin was closed for about six hours while police accident investigators examined the scene and made inquiries.
At this time the cause of the incident is unknown and inquiries are continuing.
Police spoke to a large number of people at the scene but are keen to speak to anyone who may have witnessed it. If anyone has any information they should contact police headquarters on 631212.
Inspector Bibby said: ‘This is an extremely tragic incident and our thoughts are with the family and other people injured as a result.
‘I would like to thank the other emergency services who attended a truly horrific accident and dealt with it in such a professional manner.’
iomtoday.co.im believes the bus was taken to the vehicle test centre in Tromode last night.
Our news team is working on this story today. If you were there or have more details, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to help us build a clear picture of what happened.