They Were Returning From a Trip to Istanbul. 45 Died

Horrific bus crash in Bulgaria kills at least a dozen children, among others
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 23, 2021 12:17 AM CST
At Least 45 Dead in Bulgaria Bus Crash
Stock photo.   (Getty Images / peshkov)

A bus crash in western Bulgaria early Tuesday has killed at least 45 people, authorities say. The bus, which was registered in Northern Macedonia, crashed around 2am and there were at least a dozen children among the victims, authorities said, per Reuters. Seven people were taken to hospitals for treatment, the AP reports. The cause of the crash was not immediately clear, but the bus reportedly hit a curb, highway barrier, or guardrail and caught fire; many victims suffered burns. Officials said an investigation will be launched. "Human mistake by the driver or a technical malfunction are the two initial versions for the accident," one investigator says.

Bulgarian news agency Novinite said representatives from Macedonia’s embassy visited a hospital where some of the victims were taken. Caretaker Prime Minister Stefan Yanev visited the site of the crash and told reporters it was “a huge tragedy.” “I take this opportunity to send my condolences to the relatives of the victims,” Yanev said. “Let’s hope we learn lessons from this tragic incident and we can prevent such incidents in the future.” The bus was reportedly returning North Macedonian tourists home after a weekend trip to Istanbul, Turkey, the BBC reports.

(More Bulgaria stories.)

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