9 die in India road crash


Intl desk, Oct 17: As many as nine people were killed and some 30 others injured in a head-on collision between a passenger bus and a sports utility vehicle in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh early Saturday morning, police said.

The accident occurred around 4am at Puranpur in the state’s Pilibhit district, some 250 km from state capital Lucknow.

Eye-witnesses told cops that the bus was travelling at high speed and the driver had failed to spot the SUV coming from the opposite direction while taking a blind turn on the road, leading to the collision.

“The impact was such that the bus rolled down the road into a nearby field before coming to a halt. The long-distance bus was ferrying passengers from Lucknow to Puranpur, when the accident happened,” Pilibhit police chief Jai Prakash told the media.

While seven people, mostly bus passengers, died on the spot, two others succumbed to their injuries at two local hospitals, where 30 others have been admitted to with injuries. “The condition of at least four of the injured is serious,” a doctor said.

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath has offered his condolences to the kin of those killed in the accident and announced a compensation of Rs 5 lakh (700USD) for each of the families.

“A probe has been ordered into the accident, and the bus driver booked for rash and negligent driving,” the police chief said.

Road accidents are very common in India, with one taking place every four minutes. These accidents are often blamed on poor roads, rash driving and scant regard for traffic laws.

Indian government’s implementation of stricter traffic laws in recent years have failed to rein in accidents, which claim over 100,000 lives every year.