45 dead in South Africa bus crash, 8-year-old girl only survivor, officials say

A bus carrying 46 people crashed over a bridge in South Africa, killing everyone on board except an 8-year-old girl, local officials said Thursday. 

The accident happened on the Mma Matlakala Bridge between Marken and Mokopane, in the northern province of Limpopo, roughly 320 kilometres north of Johannesburg. 

The Limpopo Department of Transportation and Community Safety said, in a statement posted on Facebook, the bus was believed to be carrying people who were travelling to attend an Easter weekend church service in the town of Moira. 

According to the statement, it’s believe the bus lost control and went over the side of the bridge and plummeted 50 metres below onto a rocky surface and caught on fire. 

The child who survived the accident was transported to a nearby hospital to be treated, but details of her condition are unclear.

The bus was registered in the neighbouring country of Botswana, the department said, and officials are working to confirm the citizenship of the victims. 

The statement went on to say “some bodies were burned beyond recognition,” while others were either trapped in wreckage or scattered nearby.

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