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Driver of Spanish crash bus which killed 13 students 'may have fallen asleep'

Emergency services personnel stand at the scene where a bus crashed along the Mediterranean coast near Freginals halfway between Valencia and Barcelona early on Sunday

The driver of a bus that crashed in north-eastern Spain on Sunday, killing 13 exchange students, may have fallen asleep or become distracted moments before the tragedy occurred, according to police.

Regional police commissioner Miquel Esquius told reporters that although investigations are continuing, police believe the driver may have dozed off or become distracted by a mobile phone or by talking to someone.

He said many of the nearly 60 students on the bus, including the 13 who died, were not wearing seat belts at the time of the crash.

Seven of those killed were from Italy. The other six were two Germans, an Austrian, a French woman, a Romanian and an Uzbek.

Three Irish students on the bus were treated in hospital for injuries.

The driver is one of 19 people still being treated in local hospitals.

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