Paris: At least 42 people, most of them pensioners on a day trip, have been killed in a head-on collision between a bus and a truck in south-west France, officials say on Friday.

The crash happened on a country road near Puisseguin in the Gironde wine region, east of Bordeaux. Both vehicles then caught fire.

France's president promised a full investigation into what he called an "immense tragedy".

It is the worst French road disaster since 1982, when 52 people died.

The bus collided with the timber truck at 07:30 local time (05:30 GMT), at what local residents described as a notoriously dangerous bend in the road.

Both vehicles quickly caught fire.

Prime Minister Manuel Valls, speaking from the scene, said 42 people died "in atrocious conditions in this bus, which was in flames after a very violent head-on collision".

He said eight people had survived, four of whom were in a serious condition.

Regional officials said the bus driver had survived the crash but the lorry driver was among the fatalities.