Authorities in India have launched an investigation after a bus crash that left 27 people dead. The bus crash, which happened on Monday evening, left 24 children dead. The bus driver and two teachers also lost their lives in the accident, which happened in the state of Himachal Pradesh.
The bus was carrying 40 students when it fell down a mountain. A statement recently said that the cause of the crash is not yet known. Pictures of the accident show the bus completely upside down on the side of the mountain.
Authorities say most of the passengers were below the age of ten. They were going to the Wazir Ram Singh Pathania Memorial School when the accident happened. Witnesses who have spoken to local media say that the bus skidded when it was turning a corner. The bus then fell off the road and onto the side of the mountain Reports say the bus plunged about 300 feet.
The bus, which was owned by the school, fell upside down on the side of the mountain. Pictures after the accident show a large group of people helping with the rescue. India’s National Disaster Relief Force also visited the area to help with the rescue operation.
Authorities have not found the cause of the accident but some residents say the school and local civic authorities are partially responsible. India Today reports that locals said the bus was being driven by a 67-year-old man who was a heart patient.
Witnesses say the bus skidded off the road but others say the driver was letting a bike get past when he accidentally drove the bus off the road. Local media has also reported that the bus was not in the best condition but that the school continued using it.
Residents also blame the bad conditions of the roads for the accidents. Pictures of the area show that there are no barriers to stop a vehicle from falling off the side of the mountain. Residents add that the bad roads actually slowed down the rescue operations, which began a few hours after the accident. Local media also reports that it is the second time that the area sees an accident recently.
Authorities are now trying to find out what led to the deadly accident. They recently confirmed that the people injured in the accident were transported to nearby hospitals.