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Egyptian court jails driver for seven years for crash which killed three doctors, two others

The crash, which occurred in January, caused controversy at the time, with some arguing that the doctors had been required to use an unsafe microbus for a work trip

Ahram Online , Sunday 5 Jul 2020
Caption: File Photo: A truck-microbus deadly crash (Photo: Al-Ahram)

A Giza misdemeanour court on Sunday sentenced a driver involved in a car crash that killed five people to seven years in prison for vehicular manslaughter.

The incident occurred in January when a vehicle driven by the defendant on a highway near the capital collided with a microbus transporting 15 medical residents from the governorate to Minya to Cairo.

Three of the doctors, all women, were killed, as were the driver of the microbus and one other person.

Twelve others were wounded in the crash, which received national media coverage.

The Sunday sentence is not final and can be appealed by the defendant.

The incident provoked public concern at the time and resulted in a spat between the Doctors Syndicate and the health ministry after reports that the doctors, who had been travelling to Cairo for a compulsory training workshop, had been informed they must attend the event, or else face punitive measures.

The urgency of the order meant the doctors had to travel immediately by microbus, and did not have time to make train reservations or secure other, safer transport, critics said.

Traffic accidents in Egypt dropped to 8,480 in 2018, down 41.1 percent from 14,403 in 2014, according to an infograph by the cabinet released last year.

Deaths due to traffic accidents declined 50.5 percent between 2014 and 2018, from 6,236 to 3,087.

Egypt has allocated millions of pounds to developing and expanding road networks in recent years.

It is currently implementing a comprehensive traffic law to crack down on violators and improve safety.

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