Guard rail kills ten in Malaysian bus crash

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Saturday, December 26, 2009

A metal guard rail slicing into a bus killed ten people today in an overnight crash in Ipoh, Malaysia. Three more were injured with one hospitalised when the double-decker Sani Express struck the rail at 1 a.m. this morning with 48 passengers on board.

The vehicle was en route to the northern destination of Perlis from the central state of Selangor when it crashed in Perak on the North-South Expressway, which runs the length of the country. The victims were on the lower deck when the vehicle skidded, struck and was ripped open on the left-hand side by the rail before swerving across the road to rest against the central divider. Of the ten killed, the youngest was fourteen and the oldest 64. The victim hospitalised has four broken ribs.

The bus driver had prior traffic offense convictions, although the bus had not been in any incidents with the police. Police arrested him, noting he was not drunk or on drugs, and he has been remanded in custody until Wednesday. He admits that he fell asleep just before the crash.

Press photographs showed the left side of the bus had been torn open along the bottom of the lower deck for most of its length, and bodies covered with newspaper lying in front of the vehicle.

Perak saw another major bus crash two years ago on the same highway. 22 people were killed in that crash, which remains the nation's worst bus accident.


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