A bus carrying dozens of pilgrims plunged into a ravine in southwest Pakistan yesterday, killing at least 18 passengers, officials said.
The accident happened before dawn in a remote district in Balochistan province.
“A bus carrying 59 pilgrims was returning ... (after) the conclusion of a religious ceremony at a local shrine when it plunged into a ravine, killing 18 people and wounding 41 others,” senior local government official Bashir Bazai told AFP.
He said that the driver was speeding and lost control.
Officials with the local tribal police, who have a checkpost near the scene, and local health officer Sumar Khan also confirmed the crash and casualties.
The bus careened off the road into a ditch during the early morning in the Karkh area of Khuzdar district.
“The bus was overloaded, and passengers were even travelling on the roof of the bus,” a Pakistani security official in the area told Reuters after paramilitary forces and soldiers were sent to help the survivors.
Khuzdar Deputy Commissioner Bashir Ahmed told Reuters that the victims were pilgrims from the province of Sindh.
He said all the dead were males.
Pakistan has a poor road safety record due to substandard roads, badly-maintained vehicles and reckless driving.
The accident came days after more than 60 people died when a high-speed train knifed through carriages of another service that had derailed minutes earlier in Sindh province.
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