SA doc's child survives Swiss bus crash
Pieter Steyn, Volksblad
Bloemfontein - A former South African's 11-year-old daughter is one of the 24 survivors of the worst bus disaster in Swiss history, in which 28 people died - 22 of them children.
Andrea Hoebrechts is the daughter of Dr Hanani Pienaar, a former Bloemfontein resident who is currently a gynaecologist in Leuven.
By late on Wednesday night, she was still in theatre at the University Hospital in Bern, Pienaar said.
Andrea sustained multiple fractures and a serious concussion.
According to Andrea’s grandfather, Professor Daan Pienaar from Bloemfontein, the children on the bus were all from Belgium and had been on a skiing trip to Switzerland.
“The bus crashed into one of the walls in a tunnel. I have been informed it is the biggest accident and rescue operation in Swiss history.”
Helicopters airlifted survivors to several hospitals in Switzerland.
Pienaar said the Belgian government offered incredible support to the parents of the victims.
“Two military planes flew parents to Switzerland shortly after the accident. The Belgian ambassador supports us throughout,” said Pienaar.
She said one of Andrea’s favourite teachers was among the 28 deceased.
“The whole of Belgium and Switzerland is shocked by the accident.”
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