17 killed in Pakistan road accident

AFP , Tuesday 30 Jul 2013

At least 17 people, including three children, burned to death in northwest Pakistan on Tuesday when a gas cylinder exploded on a bus after it collided with a truck, officials said.

The bus was carrying passengers to the city of Bannu when the collision happened on a highway around 140 kilometres (87 miles) from Peshawar, the capital of the northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

"The gas cylinder installed in the bus leaked after the accident and it caught fire," said Dil Nawaz Khan, a senior government official in Karak city, where the accident happened.

"All 18 people on board were burnt and only one passenger could survive. His position is also critical," he told AFP.

Hospital officials said six women and children were also among the dead.

"We received 17 dead bodies including the bodies of three children and as many women. Most of the dead bodies are badly mutilated and could not be identified," Sarfraz Khan, a doctor at Karak's public hospital, told AFP.

Pakistan has one of the world's worst records for fatal traffic accidents, blamed on poor roads, badly maintained vehicles and reckless driving.

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