The fact that it is confusing the whole public is that the explosion happened so fast, without the possibility for passengers to react. To the question of the Bulgarian journalists to Diana Rusinova, from the European Center for Transport Policy which was at the scene - Why are there so many victims ?! She replied:
"I can not explain why it burned so quickly, I assume it transported some light combustible material. Versions for fuel barrels are heard, most likely it was catalysts. The big collision was on the second sidewalk which blocked the back door, while the bus was already on fire and there was no way for the passengers to get out. "They tried to get out the back door, but were unsuccessful because the door was blocked by the sidewalk, and the fire quickly burned everything.", said Diana Rusinova, European Center for Transport Policy.
Smuggling of cheap Turkish gasoline to northern Macedonia has caused a bus fire and the death of 45 people on the Struma highway, is the main version of the Bulgarian authorities that the local media write about. Bulgarian Blic services reveal that buses before entering Bulgaria stop at petrol stations in Turkey, in front of the Kapiten Andrevo border crossing, where they refuel with diesel in legal tanks, and petrol in barrels in luggage.
"According to the Bulgarian information services for Epicentar, which are anonymous, the smuggled fuel has been distributed in Bulgaria, Serbia, Northern Macedonia and other countries. There has been such a practice in Bulgaria for 30 years and it is not a novelty for us. Epicentar writes that this has been practiced for the last six months as the price of fuel has increased, because it is twice cheaper in Turkey than in Bulgaria, Macedonia and Serbia. Tourist buses not only from the places we mentioned but also from other places in the luggage of the front part of the bus, have tanks for such fuels, tubes that transport them. On the Sofia-Blagoevgrad highway, they disconnect from the highway and cars are waiting for them ", said Patrica Kirillova, journalist.
According to Bulgarian media reports, the other three Besa Trans buses did not return to help, in order not to reveal that they were also transporting smuggled fuel. They rushed to unload the fuel in the territory of Macedonia.
"Bulgarian media write why when the tragedy happened, the other three buses did not help their fellow citizens, because they traveled together, but continued on their way." stressed Patrica Kirillova, journalist.
On November 23, 2021, a liter of A95 in Turkey was sold for 8.46 Turkish lira, or 36 Macedonian denars. Another version is that there was a large amount of pyrotechnic devices in gepek./21Media