Saturday, 07. December 2013 - 09:12
16. 03. 12. - 08:00
The bus driver in the crash that left 28 Belgians dead including 22 children had travelled the route often and knew it well.
Simon Epiney, the President of the commune of d’Anniviers, said the crash was a complete mystery: "It was not the bus driver's first trip to St-Luc, he was experienced and knew the route well."
He added it was a tragedy that had hit the village from nowhere, saying: "Everywhere here people are extremely upset, they are all in shock."
Epiney said the trips had been going on for 30 years and added: "A strong bond has been created over time between the society Intersoc, a large Belgian company that organises the trips each year, and the resort."
Intersoc enables, in particular, low-income families to go on skiing holidays. Up until two years ago, the school parties would travel by train.
He said the company owned two hotels – one in Saint-Luc and the other in Zinal in the Val d’Anniviers, and added: "These children were always welcome, they were always well behaved."
He said the locals that had looked after the children had been especially badly hit as well as the cook who had been in the kitchen with the kids on the day the left.
The road to the village has several steep curves and the three coaches had set off with the crash coach last.
Epiney said: "The driver managed the trip without problems every year."
He added that despite the tragedy they wanted to carry on with the plan, and that another 120 children from the same region in Belgium had only recently arrived in the village as part of the same group.
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