SOFIA, BULGARIA – A bus crash in western Bulgaria early Tuesday morning left at least 45 people dead, authorities said.
Authorities said the bus, registered in North Macedonia, crashed at around 2 a.m. and had children among the victims. Seven people were taken to hospitals for treatment.
The cause of the accident was not immediately clarified. Officials said an investigation would be launched.
Bulgarian news agency Novinite said representatives from the Macedonian embassy visited the hospital where some of the victims were taken.
Prime Minister Stefan Yanev visited the site of the crash and told reporters it was “a great tragedy.”
“I take this opportunity to extend my condolences to the families of the victims,” Yanev said. “Let’s hope we learn from this tragic incident and that we can prevent such incidents in the future.”
According to European Commission data, in 2019, Bulgaria, a European Union country with 7 million people, had the second highest rate of road deaths in the 27-nation bloc with 89 deaths per million. population, according to data from the European Commission.