A Birmingham student was in intensive car in the US with a back injury last night after a horrific bus crash which killed five people.

Annika Thornton, 21, from Sheffield, was in a "fair" condition, a spokeswoman at the Fletcher Allen Medical Centre in Burlington, Vermont, said.

Ms Thornton's mother, Julie, said her daughter had broken one or two vertebrae in the accident in upstate New York.

"It's obviously been very shocking for her," Mrs Thornton said.

"But she's awake and we've talked to her on the phone. She's not doing badly considering; she's dealing with it well." Ms Thornton, who is studying French and Italian at Birmingham University, is not paralysed and suffered no nerve damage, her mother said.

She had been staying with a friend in Montreal in Canada for three weeks and was on her way back from spending a few days in New York City when the crash happened yesterday evening north of Albany.