Viola Beach crash inquiry begins in Sweden

Viola Beach band members Image copyright @jholsson/PA Wire
Image caption The four-piece Warrington-based band were officially formed in May last year

An investigation is under way into the accident that killed British indie band Viola Beach and their manager in Sweden on Saturday.

Kris Leonard, River Reeves, Tomas Lowe, Jack Dakin and manager Craig Tarry, who were aged between 20 and 33, were killed when their car plunged more than 25m (82ft) from a bridge into a canal.

The band had hours earlier played their first gig outside the UK.

Their families said they had been doing what they loved.

Who were Viola Beach?

  • Four-piece band from Warrington, Cheshire
  • Kris Leonard - guitar, lead vocal; River Reeves - guitar; Tomas Lowe - bass; Jack Dakin - drums
  • Officially formed in May 2015
  • Released debut single Swings & Waterslides last year and put out their second single Boys That Sing on 22 January
  • Played several BBC Introducing Sessions
  • Performed at Reading and Leeds Festival in 2015

Read more about the band

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Media captionLee Harman, editor of Warrington Music website, says Viola Beach had 'talent and drive to be successful'

Swedish police have told the BBC there were two sets of safety barriers in place on the bridge, red warning lights were flashing, and other drivers were waiting.

The band's car fell through a gap which had opened to let a boat pass through, police said.

Officers are examining the car to try to find the cause of the crash, which happened at about 02:30 local time (01:30 GMT) near Stockholm.

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Media captionArchive footage of Viola Beach performing for BBC Introducing

The Warrington band were in Sweden to take part in a music festival on Friday and were due to play a gig in Guildford in Surrey on Saturday.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The accident happened in the early hours of Saturday morning in Sodertalje
Image copyright AFP
Image caption The car was towed from the canal under the E4 highway bridge near Stockholm

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