Switzerland says 6 citizens killed in Swedish minibus crash

Switzerland says six citizens killed in crash in northern Sweden

ByThe Associated Press
January 13, 2019, 9:31 AM

BERLIN -- Switzerland said six of its citizens were killed in a road crash of a minibus and a truck in northern Sweden early Saturday.

The Foreign Ministry in Bern said Sunday that a Swiss consular official was sent to the region to help the victims' families, but gave no further details on the deaths.

It said one person was injured in the crash.

Swedish mining company Kaunis Iron said Saturday that one of its trucks crashed head-on with another vehicle, a minibus, killing six of the seven passengers. The company said the bus had skidded to the wrong side of the road before the collision.

The truck's driver escaped unharmed but was in a severe state of shock, Kaunis Iron said Saturday.

The Swiss survivor was transported by helicopter to a hospital.

The accident took place north of the village of Masugnsbyn, in the Kiruna municipality close to the Kaunisvaara iron mine and the border with Finland just before 2 a.m. Saturday.

According to Swiss news portal 20 minuten, the minibus was carrying a group of Swiss men ages 20-30 who were scouting for Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, in Sweden's Arctic north.

The portal said the most of the tourists were from the Berner Oberland region south of Bern, the Swiss capital, and the group was homeward bound after a trip of several weeks that Swedish media said had also included skiing in Norway.

Swedish police said they were investigating the cause of the accident but have not provided details yet.

Swedish media reported the Kaunis Iron truck had a full load of iron ore when the collision took place in a curve in bad winter weather with strong winds.

Swedish public broadcaster SVT said the accident site near Masugnsbyn — known by locals as "the curve of death" — had a history of several accidents and the Swedish Transport Administration planned to make it safer after Saturday's crash.

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