Dozens die in India bus crash inferno

2013-10-30 09:28
A relative of a victim killed in a bus accident reacts after receiving news from the police. (Noah Seelam, AFP)

A relative of a victim killed in a bus accident reacts after receiving news from the police. (Noah Seelam, AFP)

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Hyderabad - A bus crashed into a highway barrier in southern India and erupted in flames early on Wednesday, killing at least 40 passengers, many of them burned alive in the inferno, officials said.

The driver and five others managed to escape through a window, said Girija Shankar, a district official. The other passengers, apparently asleep at the time of the crash, were trapped inside.

The privately operated bus was passing another vehicle when it crashed into the roadside barrier in Mehabubnagar in southern Andhra Pradesh state, said Deputy Inspector General of Police Naveen Kumar. The diesel tank then caught fire and engulfed the bus, according to Pradeep, a police official who goes by one name.

Authorities were questioning the survivors to get further details.

India has the highest annual road death toll in the world, according to the World Health Organisation. More than 110 000 people are killed every year in road accidents across India, according to police.

Most crashes are blamed on reckless driving, poorly maintained roads and aging vehicles.

Wednesday's crash happened more 1 200km from the Indian capital, New Delhi.

Read more on:    india

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