Two minor Indian-origin brothers were named by British police on Saturday as the victims of a fatal car crash in Wolverhampton involving speeding vehicles.
The brothers, 10-year-old Sanjay and 23-month-old Pawanveer Singh, were in their BMW with their mother when they were struck by an Audi S3 on Thursday evening, West Midlands Police said in a statement.
The driver of the Audi, believed to be racing with a Bentley, fled the scene of the accident.
A 31-year-old man from the Bentley was arrested at the scene on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and has been released on bail pending further investigation.
“I would appeal directly to the driver of the Audi to make contact with us. You may not be fully aware of the full tragic circumstances but you now need to speak to us,” said Detective Sergeant Paul Hughes, from the West Midlands Police Serious Collision Investigation Unit.
“I would also ask the public who have any information regarding the driver or recall seeing a blue Audi S3 and a white Bentley Continental convertible travelling along the Birmingham New Road to make contact,” he said, adding that the force had already had a “huge response” from the public.
In a statement, the family of the two boys paid tribute to the “beautiful children” and reiterated the police appeal for information leading to the on-the-run driver.
“Our family are grieving over the tragic deaths of our two beautiful children, as well as dealing with the shock of the horrific crash. We appeal to the general public to come forward as witnesses in order help police find the perpetrator who fled from the scene and to bring him or her to justice,” the statement read.
“At this time we would appreciate some privacy and space to grieve over our precious loss. Your cooperation in this would be very much appreciated,” it added.
Witnesses near the crash site of New Birmingham Road area of Wolverhampton reported seeing the Audi and Bentley racing each other at top speed. Paramedics arrived within five minutes of the first emergency call and found members of the public desperately trying to save the two boys.
Their mother, who has not been named, was taken to the major trauma centre at Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham.
The blue Audi could be seen with a crumpled front end at the scene of the crash.
The BMW’s off-side airbags had deployed and the car had come to rest in a row of metal pedestrian barriers at the roadside.
The driver of the Bentley, which was undamaged, initially kept driving but reportedly returned to the scene later.