41 killed as coach falls into gorge in Lasbela

Catches fire after fall: Ill-fated bus carrying 48 passengers: Two survivors rescued: PM Shehbaz, Asif Zardari, Balochistan CM express grief over tragic incident

By: News Desk
Published: 08:43 AM, 29 Jan, 2023
At least 41 people were killed when a coach plunged off a bridge on Sunday and fell into a ditch near Chungi stop in Lasbela
Caption: At least 41 people were killed when a coach plunged off a bridge on Sunday and fell into a ditch near Chungi stop in Lasbela
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At least 41 people were killed when a bus plunged off a bridge on Sunday and fell into a ditch near Chungi stop in Lasbela, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

The bus was carrying more than 40 passengers. 

At least 41 people died when a bus plunged off a bridge in Lasbela and burst into flames, a government official said Sunday.

At the remote site of the bus crash, north of the city of Bela in Lasbela district, senior administration official Hamza Anjum said "the dead bodies...are beyond recognition".

Anjum said 40 corpses were retrieved from the wreck alongside three injured, one of which died shortly after. The remaining two survivors were in "serious" condition. 

The bus was reportedly carrying a total of 48 passengers when it hit a pillar on the bridge and careened off course earlier on Sunday.

It had been travelling overnight between Quetta and Karachi.

"It is feared that the driver may have fallen asleep," Anjum said, also mentioning the possibility he had been speeding during the long-distance trip.

"We will investigate the causes of the accident," he said, adding that DNA tests would be used to determine the identity of the remains which had been "badly mutilated".

Earlier, a fire brigade squad was rushed to the scene. 

The process of cooling of the torched vehicle was underway. 

The rescuers were trying to put the coach upright which flipped after the fall with the help of heavy machinery.  

PM, Zardari, Bilawal's condolence

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, PPP Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari have expressed their heartfelt sorrow and profound grief over loss of precious lives in Lasbela and Kohat incidents. 

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Former President Asif Ali Zardari and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari Sunday offer deepest and sincerest condolences over the Lasbela bus accident and the Kohat ship accident, reported 24newsHD TV channel.

Atleast 41 passengers in an ill-fated bus were burned alive in the Bela area of Las Bela district in Balochistan. The Bus fell into a small valley as it went out of the driver’s control die to over speeding.

Ten children died and seven were severely injured as a boat overturned in a lake in Kohat. The vessel was carrying at least 25 to 30 students on the Tanda Dam lake in Kohat.

The three leaders Shehbaz Sharif, Asif Zardari and Bilawal Bhutto offered their sincerest condolences to the families of the deceased and showed extreme sorrow over this happening. They also prayed for the high ranks of the deceased.

PM Shehbaz Sharif prayed for the speedy recovery of the injured and ordered the provision of all the facilities needed for the treatment.

The prime minister directed that the injured should be given the best possible treatment. 

The three leaders condoled with the bereaved families and prayed to Allah Almight for elevation in the ranks of the deceased. 

They also prayed for early recovery of the injured. 

Former president Asif Zardari and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto have prayed for absolution of the departed souls.

Meanwhile, Balochistan Chief Minister Abdul Quddus Bizenjo has expressed his sorrow and profound grief over deaths in tragic Lasbela coach incident. 

The chief minister said that he was deeply shocked over the loss of precious lives in the incident. 

The CM ordered that district administration should continue the rescue operation and immediately shift the injured to hospitals. He also issued directions that the best possible treatment should be provided to the injured. He prayed to Allah Almighty for the absolution of the accident victims. He also prayed to Allah Almighty to give courage to bereaved families.

Ramshackle highways, lax safety measures and reckless driving contribute to Pakistan's dire road safety record.

Passenger buses are frequently crammed to capacity and seatbelts are not commonly worn, meaning high death tolls from single vehicle accidents are common.

According to World Health Organization estimates, more than 27,000 people were killed on Pakistan's roads in 2018.

Reporter Hassan Rind and input from AFP