Romania: 9 dead after van plunges into river

Romanian authorities say nine forestry workers have died after a van they were traveling in plunged into a river in northeastern Romania.

Elena Bulgarea, a local police spokeswoman, said the accident occurred early Thursday when the driver lost control of the vehicle, possibly due to an exploded tire.

Seven people who were trapped in the van died despite attempts to resuscitate them. Two more bodies were recovered from the Bistrita River, while one passenger survived and was hospitalized, said Adrian Rotaru, spokesman for the Inspectorate for Emergency Situations.

The youngest victim was 17.

Authorities said all the occupants were forestry workers from western Romania who were traveling home for Orthodox Easter. The van was not designed to transport people.