A driver in Northern Italy brought 25 children to safety when his bus caught fire in a motorway tunnel, according to media reports.

Firefighters on Tuesday responded to the burning vehicle on the road between Lecco, at the Southern end of Lake Como, and the town of Lierna, according to the fire brigade.

Photos show that the bus completely burnt out, surrounded by masses of fire-fighting foam.

According to the ANSA news agency, the rescuers took seven children to the hospital for checks after the accident.

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The driver reportedly noticed there was a problem with the bus, brought it to a halt in the tunnel and the children, who were from the area, to safety.

A firefighter told the Adnkronos news agency that a tyre on the bus may have busted, causing the fire to break out.

The children were already safe when the rescue services arrived.

The president of the Lombardy region, where Lecco is located, thanked the firefighters on Facebook for their efforts.(dpa/NAN)