MUMBAI, India (AP) – A bus plunged into a 120-meter (400-feet) deep gorge Thursday in western India, splitting open on the rocky ground below, killing at least 30 people, police said.
The driver lost control of the bus after it collided with a truck on a road near Malshej Ghat, a hilly tourist spot about 160 kilometers (100 miles) northeast of Mumbai, police officer Raghunath Yadav said.
The death toll rose as rescuers found more bodies in the bus wreckage. Another police officer, Hemant Patel, said two or three people were unaccounted for by late afternoon.
Yadav said seven people were hospitalized for injuries, some of them in serious condition. The truck driver was also hurt but managed to keep the vehicle on the road.
Patel said the badly injured passengers were found scattered in the gorge as the bus was split open when it hit the rocky ground.
Their families rushed to the site in shock and later collected the bodies of their dear ones for cremation, he said.
The bus was on an intercity route and carried all Indian passengers.
India has the world’s deadliest roads, with more than 110,000 people killed annually. Most crashes are blamed on reckless driving, poorly maintained roads and aging vehicles.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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