At least 21 people were killed and 13 others injured when a passenger bus plunged from a bridge in Mestre, Italy, near Venice on Tuesday, according to Italian authorities speaking to local media, in what has been described as an “apocalyptic scene.”
The bus was going from the northern Italian city of Venice to Marghera and was “full of people returning home from work,” the mayor of Venice, Luigi Brugnaro, said, speaking to state media RAI.
“It completely went off the road, it flew off the bridge. It was a bus; it was a highway. We are in mourning,” he added.
Morris Ceron, general director of the municipality of Venice, told the Italian public broadcaster RAI that children are among the victims of the crash.
Foreigners are also believed to have been aboard the vehicle, which was headed towards a campsite, he added.
“The Identification of the bodies is underway,” Ceron told RAI.
Images from the scene showed rescue workers by an overturned and crumpled bus below a bridge. Venetian mayor Brugnaro described the scene as “apocalyptic” in a post on Facebook.
The Italian fire brigade said rescue operations began at 19:45 p.m. local time (13:45 p.m. ET) in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.
The country’s president and prime minister expressed their condolences in the aftermath of the accident.
“I express my personal and the Government’s deepest condolences for the serious accident that occurred in Mestre. Our thoughts go out to the victims and their family and friends,” Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni wrote on X.
This is a breaking story. More to come.