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Italian Bus Crash, Tolls May Rise

Italian tourists on a weekend pilgrimage to the Padre Pio shrine in San Giovanni Rotondo went off a bridge on the A116 autostrada in southern Italy today, on July 28 2013. The bus slamming into several cars, ripped through a guardrail, concrete barriers, and went off the bridge. It fell roughly almost 100 feet into a forested area, near the town of Monteforte Irpino in Irpinia about 40 miles inland from Naples. Six of the victims were children.

Witnesses said they heard a tire blow, and some said the bus had been going downhill at normal speed when it veered into vehicles.

A number of vehicles pulled to the side of the road in various state of damage.

Thirty-seven bodies have been extracted from the wreckage. 11 people were hospitalized with injuries, many of whom were extracted with the assistance of saws.

Emergency crews worked under stress with parts of the guard rail and concrete barriers hanging overhead as they worked to free those trapped in the wreckage.

The driver is reported as one of the fatalities.

Four young children were pulled from the wreckage and sent to local hospitals.