British family in fatal car crash in France, French police say

Dijon car crash Image copyright FranceTVPluzz

A UK father and two of his children have died in a car crash on a motorway in eastern France, French police say.

The family were in a black Nissan on the A39 at Savigny-en-Revermont, near Dijon, when the car left the road at about 07:00 local time on Sunday.

The 31-year-old father, who has yet to be named, died alongside the children, believed to be aged four and 12.

His wife and another of their children survived and were taken to hospital with serious injuries, police say.

Witnesses said driving conditions were good and no other vehicles were involved.

They saw the car veer off the road and go through a safety barrier.

Police are trying to determine why the man lost control of the car and are looking into the possibility he fell asleep at the wheel.

'First observations'

BBC Paris correspondent Hugh Schofield said the car left the motorway for unexplained reasons and ploughed into an embankment supporting a bridge.

Prefect of Louhans George Bos, who was in charge of the rescue operation, said: "The first observations seem to indicate that the car drifted to the security fence on the right and landed on the pier of the bridge for unknown reasons.

"We imagine that the father may have fallen asleep or that he may have been distracted by something and moved aside."

Our correspondent said police were trying to find out whether the family had crossed over from the UK late on Saturday and been travelling overnight. They have issued warnings about safety on long journeys.

A Foreign Office spokeswoman said: "We are providing assistance following a road traffic accident in France, in which three British nationals have sadly died and two others have been hospitalised.

"We are working closely with local authorities and supporting the families at this difficult time."

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