Italy bus accident toll rises to 39

By: admin
Updated: 29 Jul 2013 06:16 AM

Rome: The death toll from a bus accident in southern Italy has
reached 39, the media reported on Monday.

The accident happened on Sunday near Avellino city when the bus with 48
tourists crashed through a guard rail and fell nearly 30-meter down the
hill, reports Xinhua.

The bus swerved to avoid hitting a truck and then rammed some cars before
violently impacting the guard rail.
A tour bus filled with Italian
pilgrims plunged off a highway into a ravine in southern Italy and smashed
into several cars that had slowed in heavy traffic, said police and

Flashing signs near Avellino, outside Naples, had warned of slowed traffic
along the stretch of the A116 autostrada, a major highway crossing at
southern Italy, before the crash occurred on Sunday night, said highway
police and officials, speaking on state radio.

They said the bus driver, for reasons not yet determined, appeared to have
lost control of his vehicle.

State radio quoted Avellino police as saying the bus driver was among the

The bus looked as if it had partially split open.

Motorists and their passengers whose vehicles were hit by the bus stood on
the highway near their vehicles. One car's rear was completely crumpled,
while another was smashed on its side. It was not immediately known if
there were injuries in any of those cars.

Italian news reports said the bus could hold a little more than 50
passengers and that it was almost filled on the ride back after an
excursion from the southeastern Puglia area, which is popular with
Catholic faithful who admire Padre Pio, a late mystic monk who was based

The bus dove off the highway near the town of Monteforte Irpino in
Irpinia, a largely agricultural area about 60 kilometers (40 miles) inland
from Naples and about 250 kilometers (160 miles) south of Rome.

A reporter for Naples daily Il Mattino, Giuseppe Crimaldi, told Sky TG24
TV from the scene that some witnesses told him the bus had been going at a
"normal" speed on the downhill stretch of the highway when it suddenly
veered and started hitting cars. He said some witnesses thought they
heard  noise as if the bus had blown a tire.

A local prosecutor arrived at the crash scene to begin an investigation
into the cause of the crash.