“AThey say it’s deliberate, but we don’t know why,” Pierre Brochet, police chief of Laval, the city on the outskirts of Montreal where the incident took place, told AFP.
The 51-year-old driver was arrested shortly after the accident, for “murder and dangerous driving”, having no criminal record.
It was the parents who came to drop off their children at daycare and a neighbor who towered over the man, who appeared “agitated” and “half-naked”, according to witnesses.
“He opened the door. He undressed. He was completely naked. We ‘dived’ into him to control him,” Hamdi Ben Chaabane, the neighbor who helped immobilize the driver, told Radio Canada.
“He was in another world, he kept screaming. He didn’t say words,” he explained.
By late afternoon, there was still a perimeter around the nursery located in a residential area, and the bus remained in the building, the roof of which had partially collapsed.
“I’m devastated. We all are,” said Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudea.
“It’s the biggest nightmare imaginable for any parent,” he added.
The bus crash happened around 8:30 a.m. local time (1:30 p.m. in Portugal), when many parents were leaving their children at the crèche.
Also read: Two children killed after bus crashes at nursery in Canada
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