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Sky News:–  Four sisters are among 20 people dead after a limousine on its way to a 30th birthday party crashed into a parked car in upstate New York.

Three of the sisters were with their husbands, according to the siblings’ aunt, Barbara Douglas, who identified the victims as Amy and Axel Steenburg, Abby and Adam Jackson, Mary and Rob Dyson, and Allison King.

The Steenburgs had married during the summer, and another newlywed couple, Erin Vertucci and Shane McGowan, also died.

Mr Steenburg’s brother, Rich, was among the fatalities as well as Mrs Steenburg’s friend, Amanda Rivenburg.

The brothers’ stepfather, Lester Andrews, told the New York Times: “Axel and Amy rented the limo with some families. There’s just a lot of confusion, so many people died.”

Ms Douglas said the four sisters were “wonderful girls”, adding: “They’d do anything for you and they were very close to each other and they loved their family.

“They did the responsible thing getting a limo so they wouldn’t have to drive anywhere,” she said, adding the couples had several children between them who they left at home.

The Ford Excursion struck an unoccupied sport-utility vehicle after failing to stop at an intersection in Schoharie on Saturday.

State police have confirmed 18 of the victims were inside the limousine, while the other two were pedestrians standing in the car park of the Apple Barrel Country Store and Cafe.

The crash happened shortly before 2pm in the town 170 miles north of New York City.

Jessica Kirby, the store’s manager, told the New York Times: “That limo was coming down that hill probably over 60mph.

“I don’t want to describe the scene. It’s not something I want to think about.”

US media had earlier reported that the vehicle was on its way to a wedding, but an aunt of one of the victims has said it was in fact heading to a birthday party.

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