Twelve people died after a bus carrying Polish pilgrims ran off the road in Croatia this morning and ended up in a canal. All 32 surviving passengers were injured, 19 of them seriously. It was initially reported that 11 people had died, but another person died later in hospital. The trip, organized by the Catholic group Brotherhood of Saint Joseph, includes three priests and six nuns. They were traveling to Medjugorje, a Catholic shrine in Bosnia.
The Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said the driver was not among the dead, but this has yet to be confirmed. All passengers are Polish adults, the Polish MFA said. All are pilgrims mainly from Radom and Sokolow in the province of Masovia, which is also home to the Polish capital Warsaw.
The accident happened around 5:40 a.m. local time when the bus they were traveling in ran off the A4 road between Jarek Bishashki and Podvorec, northeast of Zagreb. The Polish Minister of Justice and the Public Prosecutor have instructed the Prosecutor’s Office in Warsaw to start an investigation into the causes of the tragedy, and two Polish ministers are headed to Croatia after the accident.