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19 killed as bus falls into Pakistan ravine

ISLAMABAD, April 6 (Xinhua) — At least 19 people were killed and over 40 others injured when a passenger bus fell into a 250- feet-deep ravine in Pakistan’s northern Chakwal district on Saturday night, local media reported.

Dawn TV said that a passenger van was carrying over 60 pilgrims who were on their way back home when it met accident in Kalar Kahar area of Chakwal, a district in the country’s eastern Punjab province.

Police said that the apparent cause of the accident was over- loading and failure of the breaks, however, investigations are being carried into the incident.

The pilgrims were travelling back to their home in Cheecha Watani after paying visit to a shrine in Khara Shareef area of the district.

The injured people have been shifted to a nearby hospital where several of them were in critical condition.

Hospital sources said that the killed include three kids and four women.

Rescue teams are facing problems in recovering the injured people because of the darkness of the night and less facilities.

Pakistan is among the countries having worst record of fatal traffic accidents, mainly due to poor roads, lack of driving skills, badly maintained vehicles and violation of road safety rules.

Traffic police officials say that 90 percent of the accidents in the country take place due to human error.

According to statement issued by Traffic Police of Pakistan in January 2014, about 10,000 persons die each year in the country due to traffic accidents.

The cost of road accidents in Pakistan in terms of cumulative damages is around one billion dollars a year.

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