Two soldiers die in Co Antrim crash

Two soldiers die in Co Antrim crash

Two soldiers from England have been killed in a two vehicle road crash near Cullybackey, Co Antrim.

The men, both aged 24, died as a result of the crash at Ballyconnelly Road on Friday at 8.15pm.They served in the 2nd Batallion The Rifles, based in Lisburn.A third man, who is 21, suffered head injuries, but his condition is not believed to be life-threatening.The three men were travelling in a grey Fiat Punto car when it collided with a green and yellow John Deere tractor.The driver of the tractor was treated at the scene for minor injuries.The Ballyconnelly Road, which was closed for a time overnight, has now re-opened.The deaths brings the total number of lives lost on Northern Ireland's roads this year to 46 - that is 12 more fatalities than the same period last year.North Antrim MLA Jim Allister said that it has been a bad year for fatalities on Northern Ireland's roads."Two more deaths on the roads in North Antrim are not just new statistics but deep heartbreak and loss for further families. My thoughts and sympathies are with all concerned," the TUV leader said."I would urge all drivers to exercise caution and on every occasion to put safety first."Daithí McKay, North Antrim Sinn Féin MLA, said that the local community is in shock."This was a horrendous accident and my thoughts are with the families and friends of these two young men who have sadly lost their lives."I know this area well and last night I spoke to some local people who came across the scene shortly after the accident. They are still in shock at what they saw."He continued, saying "this is a tragic reminder of just how vulnerable we all can be when using roads in rural areas."

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