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Florida Church Van Crash Leaves 8 Dead, 10 Hurt; Vehicle Ends Up in Canal

 / Updated  / Source: NBC News

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Eight people were killed and 10 injured when their church van crashed in Florida early Monday, officials said.

The 15-seat van, from the Independent Haitian Assembly of God in Fort Pierce, was carrying 18 people back from Fort Myers when it passed through a stop sign at the intersection of State Road 78 and U.S. Highway 27 in Glades County around 12:30 a.m. ET, the Florida Highway Patrol said.

The van then careened across all lanes of traffic on U.S. Highway 27 near Moore Haven, about 80 miles west of West Palm Beach. The van struck an embankment ditch and ended up in a steep, partially water-filled ditch, the Highway Patrol said.

The driver and seven passengers were confirmed dead, while 10 other people were taken to four local hospitals. Four were listed in critical condition, according to a Highway Patrol report. Another four, including a 4-year-old girl, were in serious condition. Two were treated for minor injuries.

"Its tragic," Lt. Greg Bueno told reporters.

Official identifications of the victims are still pending.

— Cassandra Vinograd

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