International desk, July 08: Twenty-nine people were killed when the bus in which they were travelling in skidded off the six-lane Yamuna Expressway near India’s capital Delhi and fell 50 feet into a large drain. Seventeen people were injured.The 165-km-long expressway connects Noida with Agra in Uttar Pradesh. The bus, carrying 46 people, was going from Lucknow to Delhi when the accident happened this morning, the police said, ndtv reports.
“One sleeper coach passenger bus travelling from Lucknow to Delhi met with an accident on Yamuna Expressway,” the Uttar Pradesh Police tweeted.
According to reports, the driver fell asleep just before he lost control of the heavy vehicle on the expressway near Agra.
In a video, a group of rescuers – their feet half buried in wet mud as they walked about the debris – are seen pulling out bodies from the twisted metal parts of the white bus, whose roof had been ripped off in the middle by the force of the impact after it smashed the safety railing and fell on the black waters of the large drain.
The injured people have been taken to hospital, said the district magistrate. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath paid his condolences and asked the authorities to give all help to the injured and the families of those killed in the accident, the Chief Minister’s Office in Lucknow said.
Road safety experts have long warned the dangers of speeding on the wide expressway, especially in early morning hours and night.
Accidents have also been rising on the Lucknow-Agra Expressway. Last week, the Uttar Pradesh government said drivers will have to pay a fine for speeding if they covered the 302 km-stretch from the Lucknow toll plaza to Agra in less than three hours.