At least 19 people were killed when a Kerala State Road Transport Corporation bus met with an accident in Tamil Nadu’s Coimbatore district on Thursday, The News Minute reported. At least 22 people were wounded in the incident.
The injured were admitted to hospitals in Tirupur and some were referred to Coimbatore, police told PTI.
Tirupur Superintendent of Police Disha Mittal confirmed that 17 bodies had been found. She added that two or three people were still stuck in the bus, and rescue operations were on.
The accident took place around 3.15 am in Coimbatore’s Avinashi town when a lorry rammed into the volvo bus. The lorry, which was also registered in Kerala, was coming from the opposite direction. The driver of the lorry tried to overtake another vehicle but lost control, ran over the divider and rammed into the bus.
The right side of the bus was completely damaged in the accident. The Kerala government-run bus was going to Ernakulam from Bengaluru in Karnataka, state Transport Minister AK Saseendran told reporters.
“There were 48 passengers on the bus,” Ernakulam District Transport Officer Thajudheen said. “Twenty-five were travelling to Thrissur, others to Ernakulam and Palakkad. Conductor of the bus died. Those who are injured are in critical condition.”
The driver of the lorry has surrendered to the police, reported Hindustan Times.
“Senior officials from Kerala State Road Transport Corporation have rushed to the site,” Kerala Transport Minister AK Saseendran said according to ANI. He added that the managing director of the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation will conduct an inquiry and submit a report.
The Kerala Chief Minister’s Office said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has instructed Palakkad District Collector D Balamurali to provide emergency medical help to the victims. It said procedures to identify the deceased are underway, and that the Kerala government will cooperate with Tamil Nadu in taking relief measures.