KARACHI: At least five people – including two women – lost their lives and over two dozen suffered wounds when a speeding passenger bus lost control and collided with the building of a toll plaza in the suburbs of Karachi on Tuesday.
“The accident occurred on the National Highway when driver of a Badin-bound bus lost control of his vehicle on approaching the Sassui Toll Plaza near Steel Town and the bus hit a concrete column with a loud bang,” said Steel Town SHO Ghulam Mujtaba.
“After the collision that resulted in at least five deaths the bus overturned. However, fortunately it did not hit an oil tanker that was right ahead getting ticket from the toll plaza,” said the officer, adding: “Otherwise the death toll would have been higher.”
Following the accident, rescuers from Edhi Foundation and Chhipa as well as the police and Rangers rushed to the site and mounted a rescue operation. Heavy machinery had to be called in to retrieve bodies and rescue the injured.
The dead and the injured were later shifted to Karachi’s Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre (JPMC) for medical treatment. The JPMC Head Seemin Jamali said five people – two women and three men – were already dead when they were brought to the hospital.
“Twenty-seven injured were also brought to the facility. Five of them are still admitted while the rest have been discharged,” she added.
The two female victims were later identified as Raees Fatima and Shahjahan Bibi – both school teachers – who were on their way to their schools in Gharo and Ghaggar Phatak. The initial investigation suggests that the accident occurred due to failure of brakes.
“Apparently, the accident took place due to brake failure,” said District Malir SSP Rao Anwar. “We have also approached the motor vehicle department to examine the bus which would help the investigators to ascertain the actual cause of the accident.” A case has been registered while police were looking for the bus driver, who went missing after the incident. Further investigation is under way.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 15th, 2017.