At least 21 people, including foreign tourists, were killed and 20 others injured when a bus running on methane plunged off a bridge and burst into flames in Venice on Tuesday evening, officials in the world-renowned city said.
“A provisional report said at least 21 were injured and more than 20 were hospitalized, many of them in critical condition.Luca Zaia, governor of the Veneto region of which Venice is the capital, expressed his regret.A great tragedy“. among the victims.”Ukrainian tourists“, a spokesman for the town hall told AFP, but also for the Germans, the Italian company Ansa pointed out.
“Some minors were also involved in the accidentHe added on Facebook, “The exhumation and reconnaissance work is still going on“.
Around 10 p.m. (8 p.m. GMT), firefighters were working with the wreckage of a burned-out bus that had flipped onto its roof, an AFP photographer noted at the scene, between Mestre and Marghera, two stretches of land on the mainland overlooking the commune of Venice and its famous lagoon.
The accident occurred around 7.30 pm local time. The bus was operating on behalf of Venice’s public transport company (ACTV) between the historic center of Venice and a campsite located on the mainland, which explains “The victims and injured are not only Italians, but from many other countries“, according to Mr. Jaya.
Venice city hall gave an initial report of 20 deaths, including two children, and about ten people hospitalized. Mayor Luigi Brugnaro described the scene as “an apocalyptic scene” shortly after the crash. “A tragedy struck our community tonight,” he began on Facebook. “The accident claimed many lives among the passengers of the bus. He fell on dry land near a bridge near Mestre. A veritable apocalypse scenario”.
Bus driver discomfort?
According to Venice firefighters, the bus “caught fire” after falling from a bridge crossing the railway line between Mestre and Marghera. According to Il Corriere della Sera newspaper, the scheduled bus left its path on the bridge, broke the guardrail and fell from a height of about ten meters near the train tracks below.
According to Il Corriere, the bus caught fire after it came into contact with power lines. According to Interior Minister Matteo Piandosi, “the worst factor was the methane fuel (of the vehicle), so the fire spread quickly.” “The number is sad and dramatic, but I fear it will rise,” he told television news on public channel Roy 1.
When asked about the causes of the accident, Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini, also the Minister of Transport, stated on the Rete4 channel that “the driver is hypothesized to be ill”.
Italy’s worst accident to date occurred on July 28, 2013. A coach returning from a three-day excursion carrying fifty passengers from the province of Naples fell into a ditch thirty meters near Avellino. Fifty km east of Naples. Thirty-eight died instantly, and two died of their wounds.
The Venice health department immediately launched an emergency plan for maximum attendance of the injured, recalling on-duty doctors and emergency personnel.
Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni immediately expressed her deepest condolences. “I have been in contact with Mayor Luigi Brugnaro and Minister (Transport) Matteo Salvini to follow up on the news of this tragedy,” he said in a statement.