Devastating Accident Kills 45 Easter Worshippers

Tragedy befell a bus carrying worshippers en route to an Easter celebration in South Africa.

Reports from authorities indicated that a bus with 45 passengers from Botswana bound for the South African community of Moria suffered a tragic accident on Thursday, plunging off the Mmamatlakala bridge and plummeting approximately 165 feet before erupting in flames, as per Fox News.

The sole survivor was identified as an 8-year-old girl.

Moria serves as the headquarters for the Zionist Christian Church, drawing hundreds of thousands of attendees for its Easter pilgrimage.

Colin Msibi, a spokesperson for South Africa’s Department of Transport, explained to the BBC, "What we suspect is that when the bus hit the barrier of the bridge, the child was ejected out of the bus, and that is how the child was able to survive."

The girl was reported to be in serious condition at a nearby hospital, according to the Limpopo Province Department of Transportation, as cited by The New York Times.

Describing the accident's location, The Times noted, "in a scenic, mountainous area of winding roads and sweeping vistas about three and a half hours north of Johannesburg. The road on a high overpass bent sharply over a ravine flanked on both sides by rocky, tree-covered slopes."

Transport Minister Sindisiwe Chikunga expressed her condolences, stating via the BBC, "Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. We continue to urge responsible driving at all times with heightened alertness as more people are on our roads this Easter weekend."

Chikunga cautioned about the road's challenging nature, remarking, "The road where the accident took place is winding with sharp bends, hairpin bends, a road that I’d never advise any person who is driving a heavy vehicle such as a bus, such as a truck, to use."

Due to the fire, the BBC reported that only nine bodies found at the crash site were identifiable.

Before the tragedy, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa had urged caution among drivers, emphasizing in a statement Thursday, "Easter should not be a time where we sit back and wait to see statistics on tragedy or injuries on our roads."

Fox News highlighted that over 200 people in South Africa lost their lives in crashes during Easter weekend last year.

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