Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Colombia: Twelve Passengers Killed, 35 Injured When Bus Leaves Road, Plunges 80 Meters

According to The Latin American Tribune, Twelve people were killed and 35 others injured Monday (November 4) when a bus ran off the road and plunged 80 meters (262 feet) to the bottom of a ravine along a highway between the towns of Toribio and Jambalo in Cauca department [state].

The bus left Jambalo with at least 45 people, the majority of them indigenous Indians, who had participated in a local festival.

COMMENT: Cauca Highway Police commander Maj. Richard Sanabria said that the injured were taken to several hospitals, some of them in Popayan, the regional capital.

Terrain difficulties and bad weather in the region made the recovery of bodies perilous for first responders.

Over the weekend there were two accidents with similar characteristics, the first in the northwestern province of Antioquia which left five people dead and 25 injured and the other in the central region of Tolima which left four dead and 30 injured.

Although Colombia is known regionally as one of the most prosperous and advanced business-savvy countries in Latin America, the reality is that ground transport is often as perilous as it is in most Andean nations simply as a result of a lack of guard-rails on elevated roadways, operator competency, high-risk roadways and frequent maintenance problems of mass-transit vehicles.