Scene of the crash
Scene of the crash Israel Fire Department

24 people have been injured in a major traffic accident in southern Israel.

The massive pileup - which involved at least one bus, a truck, several shuttle buses and five private vehicles - occurred along Route 40 near Ohalim Junction in the Negev.

Magen David Adom (MDA) paramedics provided treatment at the scene to scores of victims, and roads were closed in both directions as a result of the crash, causing serious congestion.

Nine of the injured, several in moderate condition, were evacuated to Soroka Hospital for further treatment. Among them were a 50-year-old shuttle bus driver and a 30-year-old owner of a private vehicle involved in the pileup.

15 of those injured were children aged around seven who had been traveling home from school in the bus. All suffered minor injuries.

According to an initial investigation, the crash occurred when a truck overturned on the highway.