Eastern Cape bus crash death toll now 31, as police struggle to identify one passenger's body

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The scene of the accient.
The scene of the accient.
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  • Another injured victim of last week's deadly DMJ bus accident has died
  • Two others are still fighting for their lives in East London's Frere Hospital. 
  • Eastern Cape police are still battling to identity one of the 31 people who died in the crash.

The death toll in last week's DMJ bus accident has climbed to 31 after one of the injured passengers succumbed to his injuries at Frere Hospital on Tuesday night. 

The bus overturned on a downhill curve at the deadly Kei Cuttings, near the Kei River on the N2 between East London and Butterworth, on Monday last week. 

The driver had lost control and the bus veered off the road, before plunging down a steep 200m embankment. 

Thirty-one people lost their lives in the crash, while others were rushed to hospital and some escaped unharmed. 

READ | 'I heard my wife shouting for our baby': Eastern Cape man recalls horror crash that killed 30

The luxury coach company that owns the bus, DMJ Transport, said it did not know what had caused the accident which also claimed their driver's life. 

Chief director for clinical support services in the Department of Health, Kidwell Matshotyana, said the most recent fatality was a 51-year-old man who had died in ICU on Tuesday. 

Injuries

“The gentleman had some serious injuries to the chest and ribs, as well as his head. We are still trying to determine if the family had been contacted and if they are aware of his admission. There are two patients remaining in hospital, a one-year-old boy and a lady with injuries to her hand," said Matshotyana.  

The Eastern Cape police are still seeking the assistance of the public to identify one of the 30 bodies from the crash. 

Police spokesperson Captain Siphokazi Mawisa said that no one had come forward to identify the body of the man believed to be in his 30s. 

She said only 29 bodies were identified last week. The police are investigating a case of culpable homicide. 

In a statement on Thursday, Mawisa said any family who wee missing a male relative in his 30s should contact Detective Warrant Officer Ronald Engelbrencht of the Komga SAPS on 082 441 9166 or 043 831 1020. 

READ | E Cape bus crash death toll climbs to 30, as families demand answers

The bus was carrying 52 passengers from Cape Town to different towns in the Eastern Cape when it was involved in the accident. 

Passengers who survived the crash complained about smoke rising from the bus and that it was struggling to drive uphill.

The company claimed that the bus was checked an hour before the trip and that it was given the green light for the journey. 

It also said the bus had passed a roadworthy test less than a month before the accident.    

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