45 people were killed in a bus crash in South Africa

Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters

A view of the burnt remains of the bus carrying Easter pilgrims from Botswana to Moria, after it crashed near Mamatlakala in the northern Limpopo province of South Africa.



CNN

Dozens of worshipers were killed after a bus heading to an Easter conference crashed in South Africa's Limpopo province on Thursday, the latest tragedy in a country where recent road accidents have left several victims.

The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) reported that the accident claimed 45 lives, and the only survivor, an eight-year-old girl, was airlifted to hospital with serious injuries.

According to the SABC, the passengers were pilgrims traveling from Gaborone – the capital of neighboring Botswana – to Zion Christian Church in the town of Moria for an Easter conference.

The accident occurred in the Mamatlakala mountain pass between Mokopane and Markene. The bus reportedly caught fire after it fell through the barriers and fell from the bridge. The cause of the accident is under investigation.

The governorate’s transportation department said in a statement, “According to reports, the driver lost control and the bus fell on a rocky surface at a depth of about 50 meters under the bridge and caught fire.”

The statement stated that efforts are continuing to recover the bodies of the killed passengers.

Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters

A man walks next to the damaged part of the bridge, where the bus collided with the barriers.

The local administration said: “Some of the bodies were burned beyond recognition.” Others “trapped inside the wreckage and others [are] “They were scattered at the scene,” she added.

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Officials have only been able to recover 12 bodies from the crash site so far, according to Florence Radzilani, a member of the provincial executive board for transportation and community safety.

Radzilani Tell Local news channel Newzroom Afrika said that when it rushed to the scene on Thursday, the situation was very bad.

Razilani said that the authorities arranged a minibus to transport some relatives to the scene of the accident on Friday, and then to the hospital to check on the sole survivor, adding that officials worked until the early hours of the morning to recover the bodies and returned to the scene. Scene on Friday.

South African state radio said Transport Minister Sindisiwe Chikonga said the government would return the bodies to Botswana.

“Sending my heartfelt condolences to the families affected by the tragic bus accident near Mamatlakala. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. We continue to urge responsible driving at all times with increased vigilance as more people are on our roads this Easter weekend,” Chikunga said in a statement. “.

And South African President Cyril Ramaphosa as well He expressed his condolences To the Government of Botswana and the families and friends of the bus accident victims.

This story has been updated with further developments.

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