Bridge disaster bodies washed up in Spain

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The Independent Online

Six victims of last Sunday's bridge disaster in Portugal have washed up on Spain's rocky "death coast" more than 200km (125 miles) to the north.

Six victims of last Sunday's bridge disaster in Portugal have washed up on Spain's rocky "death coast" more than 200km (125 miles) to the north.

The identities of four bodies were confirmed - via photos sent on the internet - as women who were on the bus that plunged into the swollen Douro when a 116-year-old bridge collapsed.

Two more bodies appeared yesterday near the Galician coastal town of Camariñas. The region is known as Costa da Morte because of its rocks and strong currents.

Experts were initially sceptical that the bodies could have travelled so far. But the evidence was there. The women were well dressed; one wore Portuguese underwear, another wore a watch showing Portuguese time - an hour earlier than Spanish - and another wore gold earrings from the region around Castelo de Paiva where the tragedy happened.

Twelve bus seats and personal objects washed up nearby. The long journey was due to a combination of weather conditions.

Rescue workers said the Douro's raging current probably swept victims 40km downstream and out to sea within two hours of the bridge collapsing. The intense cold kept the bodies preserved.

The bus company, Asadouro, said 53 people were aboard, not 67 as first reported. The bus has still not been found. The bodies were being flown to Portugal.

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