Shimla: Driver of a private operated bus (HP-71-2243) plying on the Milla village to Poanta Sahib hilly route in Shillai area in the southern part of Himachal Pradesh, lost control of the vehicle, yesterday afternoon, before it plunged into a valley that has left 18 dead and 47 others injured.
The vehicle is said to have a seating capacity of only 37 passengers and was carrying more passengers than permitted.
One media report (Time of India) claimed that a wheel coming off from the vehicle was the cause of the accident, whereas another (Amar Ujalla) claimed that overloading and speed driving was being attributed as the accident casue.
Ten accident victims died on the spot and 8 others on way to the hospital. Most of the dead belong to villages Milla,Failash, Farog, Sonal, Magnal and Gathadhar.
Of the 47 injured, 22 admitted in Nahan and Poanta Sahib Hospitals, are in serious condition. One seriously injured victim has been shifted to PGI Hospital at Chandigarh. The driver and the conductor of the bus are among those injured.
The over loaded bus was plying on the route, when at 12.15 p.m. at a place named Timbi (13 Km from Shillai) when the driver lost control and the bus fell about 200 feet into the valley.
The administration has ordered a magisterial inquiry.
Last September (2013) a major accident involving a privately operated bus had left all 21 passengers dead when the vehicle had plunged into a deep ravine near Jabrog village in Sangrah area of Sirmaur district.