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9 Mar 2018

11 die in minibus fire, as another veers off road killing 10

In two separate accidents, 11 people died when a minibus became trapped in a forest fire in rural Guinea-Bissau, while another 10 persons died in Peru when a bus veered off the road, killing 10 in the process, police and doctors have said.
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The Guinea-Bissau accident happened on Thursday night, after the overcrowded vehicle left the village of Konkoli, near the capital Bissau, on an 80-kilometer (50-mile) trip to a market in Bissora.

“The driver tried to go down a track in a forest which was on fire. There was no visibility because of the smoke and fire,” a police official said. “The passengers were trapped and died of suffocation.”

Police recovered nine bodies, and two people who were injured later died, the official said. Nine others are being treated for injuries.

The toll was confirmed by sources at the local hospital.

The cause of the fire was not immediately known. At this time of the year, farmers in Guinea-Bissau often set fire to harvest stubble to eliminate weeds, and the blaze can spread from fields to the bush.

Meanwhile, in Peru, a bus veered off course and plunged 100 meters down a gorge in Peru’s southeastern Andean region of Ayacucho Wednesday, killing at least 10 passengers and injuring more than 20, police said.

The bus, which had more than 50 people on board, tumbled off the road in the early hours of the morning on the Interoceanic Highway, which connects Peru with Brazil.

“We have so far recorded 10 deaths after a bus fell into a 100 meter (325 feet) gorge,” said Jose Ramirez, a police official in Puquio, the closest town to where the accident took place.

The bus was traveling from the capital Lima to Querobamba, Sucre province, which is located over 3,500 meters (11,500 feet) above sea level.

Over 20 injured passengers were taken to hospital in Puquio and Huanta, another nearby town.

There were two other deadly bus crashes in Peru in January and February, which killed 97 people in total.

Source: AFP

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