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Bus catches fire in road accident in India; at least 20 dead

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Posted at 5:47 PM, Jan 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-11 17:47:44-05

LUCKNOW, India (AP) — At least 20 people were killed when a double-decker bus caught fire after ramming into a truck on a highway in northern India, police said.

Another 21 people were taken to a hospital, some of them in critical condition, following the crash late Friday, said senior police officer Mohit Aggarwal.

Many of the bodies were burned beyond recognition after the fire swept through the bus, he said.

The accident occurred near Kannauj, a town about 200 kilometers (125 miles) southwest of Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh state.

Police suspect the truck driver lost control over the vehicle, leading to the collision with the bus. The truck driver escaped, police said.

Deadly bus accidents are common in India. Around 150,000 people die every year on India’s roads, often because of reckless driving, badly maintained roads and vehicles overcrowded with passengers.

In September 2018, a bus carrying pilgrims from a Hindu temple in the hills of southern India plunged off a road and killed at least 55 people.