Ten guests at sport stars' 'fairytale wedding' killed in horror bus crash and dozens injured as driver, 58, arrested

12 June 2023, 06:56 | Updated: 12 June 2023, 08:34

A total of 10 guests were killed in the crash after the "fairytale" wedding
A total of 10 guests were killed in the crash after the "fairytale" wedding. Picture: Alamy/Social media

By Will Taylor

A horrific bus crash has killed 10 wedding guests in one of Australia's worst ever road incidents.

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It was travelling in foggy conditions when it crashed at a roundabout in Greta, New South Wales.

A total of 25 people were injured, with 21 still in hospital on Monday and one person in a critical condition, after the bus flipped onto its side just before midnight on Sunday.

Another 18 escaped without injury. Police said the scene was "very traumatic" and the death toll could rise.

First responders had to lift the bus to free people trapped underneath.

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Guests had been enjoying a wedding at the Wandin Estate Winery earlier and were heading to accommodation in Singleton.

The tragedy, which is Australia's worst road crash for 16 years, happened in the heart of its wine country.

It came after two Australian rules players, Mitchell Gaffney and Maddy Edsell, married. They play for the men and women's teams of the Singleton Roosters.

The bus flipped and landed on its side
The bus flipped and landed on its side. Picture: Alamy

They had driven in to the reception in a 1950s VW Beetle, restored by the bride's father.

A guest told the country's Nine Network it was a "fairytale" wedding and he added: "We just got the news that there has been a crash and we all stared panicking."

The bus's driver, a 58-year-old man, has been arrested and will be charged as police investigate what happened.

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The bus driver will be charged by police
The bus driver will be charged by police. Picture: Alamy
The fatal crash happened in Greta, New South Wales
The fatal crash happened in Greta, New South Wales. Picture: Google Maps

A police source told The Sydney Morning Herald the driver was not drunk, but the bus was being driven "erratically" when it flipped.

Several guests were the couple's teammates and the Roosters were told some of its members are thought to be injured.

Anthony Albanese, the Australian prime minister, said: "All Australians waking up to tragic news from the Hunter send our deepest sympathies to the loved ones of those killed in this horrific bus tragedy.

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The wedding was described as a "fairytale" by one guest
The wedding was described as a "fairytale" by one guest. Picture: Instagram

"For a day of joy to end in such devastating loss is cruel indeed. Our thoughts are also with those who have been injured."

The Australian Football League's Twitter account for News South Wales said it was "shocked and saddened by the bus tragedy in the Hunter Valley".

Residents left flowers a few miles down from the crash site.

One, Georgie Bainbridge, said she did not know anybody involved.

"It was really sad what happened. Especially on what was an amazing day for an amazing couple. It was really sad," she said.

The bus company, Linq Buslines, said the firm was "incredibly saddened to learn of the bus crash that has occurred overnight".

"Our hearts are with everyone involved in this terrible tragedy and we send our deepest condolences to those who have lost loved ones," it said in a statement.

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