Rescuers are saying that at least 37 bodies have been pulled from the mangled wreckage of a tour bus that plunged dozens of yards off a major highway in southern Italy after slamming into several cars slowed by heavy traffic. The bus landed in a ravine.

Italian tour bus that dropped off a ravine (WPVI TV via Facebook)

The Italian news agency ANSA quotes rescuers as also saying at least 11 people were injured, two of them very critically, in the crash Sunday night near Avellino, outside Naples, and some 160 miles south of Rome. Italian TV quotes people at the scene as saying about 49 people were on the bus.

First reports said the passengers had spent the day in Puglia, an area near the Adriatic on the east coast famed for religious shrines. But a state radio reporter at the scene says authorities told him that the bus had been bringing the passengers home after an outing to a thermal spa near the town of Benevento, not far from Avellino.

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