40 Killed in Bus Accident in Andhra Pradesh
At least 44 passengers, including children, have been killed as a bus went up in flames following a crash in southern India.
Many of the victims were burned alive in the flaming wreckage of the bus, which was heading to the southern city of Hyderabad from Bangalore.
Authorities say the vehicle hit a highway barrier when the driver attempted to overtake another bus. One local official claimed the bus was speeding when it crashed.
"The diesel tank got burst and flames erupted. Before the passengers could realise what had happened, the blaze engulfed the entire bus," an onlooker was quoted as saying.
The tragedy occurred early in the morning and many victims were asleep when it happened. Many of the bodies were charred beyond recognition by the time rescue workers arrived.
Some of the victims are believed to have been computer engineers travelling between India's two principal IT hubs. Many were heading to their homes to celebrate the Diwali festival.
"The main reason why the mishap occurred was because the bus was speeding and it hit against a road divider," said a local official.
Seven people including the driver managed to escape through the windows with minor burns. Officials are questioning the survivors for more details.
The bus was operated by the Hyderabad-based private firm Jabbar Travels.
Badly maintained roads and rash driving are often blamed for such accidents across India. In 2012, nearly 140,000 people died in road accidents across the country, one of the highest death tolls in the world.
India bus accident kills dozens - (Google Maps)
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