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At least 4 killed when freight train hits bus in Mississippi

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At least four people were killed and dozens injured on Tuesday when a freight train slammed into a charter bus at a railroad crossing in Biloxi, Mississippi, officials said.

[BILOXI, Mississippi] At least four people were killed and dozens injured on Tuesday when a freight train slammed into a charter bus at a railroad crossing in Biloxi, Mississippi, officials said.

Witnesses told local television station WLOX the bus, which was traveling from Austin, Texas, got stuck on the tracks. Several of the victims were airlifted from the scene.

Three people on the bus were killed in the collision and a fourth person died after being transported from the scene, Biloxi Police Chief John Miller told a news conference.

Thirty-five passengers on the bus, which was carrying more than 40 people, were transported to area hospitals and a few other passengers escaped unharmed, Mr Miller said.

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The conditions of the injured passengers was not immediately released.

The train was operated by CSX, which said in a statement its crew members on board were uninjured.

The New Orleans to Mobile, Alabama, train had three locomotives and 52 cars, the company said. The crossing where the crash occurred has flashing lights and gates, it added.

Live video feed after the accident showed the bus standing upright, diagonally across the tracks with the train stopped at its side. There were numerous emergency vehicles on the scene.

Sue Perkins, who was in a vehicle behind the bus and witnessed the crash, told WLOX the bus appeared to get stuck because it was too long for the steep angle of the hill at the crossing.

The red lights at the crossing lit up and the safety gates came down after the bus became stuck, Ms Perkins told the station. Then she saw the train in the distance and witnessed it hitting the bus when it could not stop in time, she added. "There was a big waterfall of glass that just came out of the bus" in the crash, she told WLOX.

The Sun Herald newspaper showed a photo of a triage area set up near the bus.

REUTERS

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