A COACH carrying around 50 tourists which overturned on a popular route has now been removed from the scene.
The vehicle left the A83 at the Rest And Be Thankful in Argyll and came to a stop near a loch at around 2.10pm yesterday.
Some 23 people were taken to hospital, with the seriously injured airlifted for treatment. Their injuries were not thought to be life-threatening.
It is believed that high winds in the area at the time were a possible factor.
There were 52 people on board the Lochs and Glens Holidays coach and 25 of those were described as “walking wounded” following the crash.
A rest centre in Arrochar was in place to support the remaining passengers, and 29 of them were spending the night at local hotels.
Police said the road was closed for a time but has since reopened, while the coach has been removed.
Officers appealed for information from any witnesses.
Chief Inspector Fraser Candlish said: “This has clearly been a terrifying experience for all of those involved and officers have been working closely with our partners to provide support to those effected and ensure everyone’s safety.
“A multi-agency response has been critical to this operation and police were joined at the scene by the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, the Ambulance Service, Argyll and Bute Council, the Royal Navy and the Mountain Rescue team.
“Inquiries are ongoing to establish the exact circumstances surrounding the incident; however, early indications would suggest that the high winds may have been a factor.”
Police, fire and helicopter rescue crews were sent to the scene around 200 metres north of the B828 junction and the road was closed while emergency services treated passengers and investigated the cause of the incident.
Local diversions were in place at the A819 at Inverary and also at the A82 north of Tarbet.
Lochs and Glens Holidays runs a number of coach trips, mainly in the Scottish Highlands, but picks up passengers across the UK.
A spokeswoman for the company said: ‘’We are liaising with the emergency services regarding the injured passengers and to establish the cause of the accident.”
Anyone with information on the crash is asked to contact police on the non-emergency number 101.
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