Bus starts smoking in Mont Blanc tunnel; 68 people evacuated

July 17, 2019 - 10:32 am

ROME (AP) — Dozens of passengers have been evacuated from a double-decker bus in the Mont Blanc tunnel after the vehicle started spewing smoke.

Firefighters in the northern Italian town of Aosta said a child smashed her finger in a vehicle door during the evacuation Wednesday but that all 67 passengers plus the driver were able to safely escape from the bus, which had begun its journey in Switzerland and was traveling from France to Italy.

Firefighters said an unspecified mechanical problem in the bus triggered the smoke.

Attention to safety in the 11.6-kilometer (7.2-mile) Alpine tunnel between France and Italy was heightened after a 1999 fire that killed 39 people.

Within two hours Wednesday, traffic was reported flowing again in both directions in the tunnel, a major trans-Alpine route.