8-Year-Old Sole Survivor of Bus Crash That Killed 45 People Discharged from the Hospital

On March 28, a bus crashed over the Mmamatlakala Bridge in the northern province of Limpopo, South Africa

<p>AP Photo/Themba Hadebe</p> Wreckage of the bus crash

AP Photo/Themba Hadebe

Wreckage of the bus crash

An 8-year-old sole survivor of a bus crash that killed 45 other people in the northern province of Limpopo, South Africa, on March 28 was released from the hospital.

The Limpopo Department of Health (Bophelong) announced in a statement on Wednesday that the girl — who has been identified as Atlang Siako by the Associated Press — was discharged from the hospital on Wednesday, April 3. She's set to travel to Gaborone, Botswana, with her mother after departing from Polokwane Airport.

"Limpopo Health MEC, Dr. Phophi Ramathuba is this morning bidding farewell to the 8-year-old girl who survived the bus accident ferrying the Botswana nationals who were going to the Easter pilgrimage at ZCC St. Engenas in Moria," the Limpopo Department of Health said. "The girl, together with her mother, departed from Polokwane Airport and will be going to Gaborone, via OR Tambo International Airport."

According to the AP, Limpopo provincial Health Minister Phophi Ramathuba told reporters on April 3 that the 8-year-old was "in a position where we can now release her to her home because at the same time the psychological impact of being away from home does have an impact on the total, complete healing."

<p>Traffic Policing Affairs Limpopo/Facebook</p> Mmamatlakala Bridge

Traffic Policing Affairs Limpopo/Facebook

Mmamatlakala Bridge

Related: 45 Dead After Bus Full of Easter Worshippers Plunges Off Bridge with 8-Year-Old Child Only Survivor

The horrific crash happened after a bus transporting crashed over the Mmamatlakala Bridge, the province's Department of Transport and Community Safety said in a statement posted to Facebook on March 28. According to the South African Broadcasting Corporation, the passengers were a group from Botswana, who were traveling to a church in Moira for an Easter conference.

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“According to reports, the driver lost control, and the bus fell onto a rocky surface some 50 meters [164 feet] under the bridge and caught fire," the department said. Per the AP, the bus ultimately landed in a ravine before being consumed by flames.

PEOPLE has reached out to the Department of Transport and the Limpopo Department of Health.

<p>Shiraaz Mohamed/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock</p> Wreckage of the bush crash

Shiraaz Mohamed/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Wreckage of the bush crash

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Once the rescue teams responded, they discovered some of the victims’ bodies “were burned beyond recognition,” while other bodies were “trapped inside the debris and others scattered on the scene.”

Resident Simone Mayema told The Washington Post that he was one of the first to arrive at the scene. “We tried to help [but] there was nothing we could do because there [were] flames," he said.

In a statement posted to X (formerly known as Twitter), South Africa's Department of Transport said the 8-year-old girl had been "seriously injured" in the accident.

Efforts to identify the remains of those who died in the accident are still ongoing, according to the AP.

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