MUZAFFARABAD: Eighteen people died after a passenger bus plunged into a ravine 200 metres deep in AJK on Monday.
The accident happened in the area of Poona, 170 kilometres southeast of Muzaffarabad and 40 kilometres from Mirpur.
According to Bhimber SP Ghulam Akber Ch the death toll rose to 18 by Monday afternoon when the seriously injured passengers succumbed to their wounds in Divisional Headquarter’s Hospital (DHQ) Mirpur.
“A Samahni-bound passenger bus from the eastern district of Mirpur fell into a 200-metre deep ditch, killing 16 passengers and wounding 37 others at about 10.30am,” said senior police official Ghulam Akbar.
He said that the bus was overloaded and speeding. The driver lost control while taking a sharp turn on the narrow and poorly maintained road in the mountainous region.
Rescue teams led by Bhimbher deputy commissioner and superintendent police shifted the bodies to the hospital.
The deceased identified included Muhammad Azeem, Zareena Bibi, Saeed Agha, Amaad, Mahmood while eight other unidentified bodies were taken to DHQ’s hospital. The seriously injured included driver Rafi Ullah, Zahid Hussain, Mumtaz Ali, Pathani Bibi, Muhammad Shafi and Saiqa Mahmood. Pakistan has an appalling record of fatal traffic accidents due to poor roads, badly maintained vehicles and reckless driving.
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