16 killed as ‘Boulder’ in Gilgit-Baltistan hits passenger bus


By Haneen Abbas


Sakardu: A huge boulder rolled off a mountainside at Gilgit-Baltistan National Highway and smashed into a passenger bus killing 16 people people at the spot, the authorities said on Sunday.

The boulder, which the authorities said weighed several tons and measured 17 feet across and 6 feet high, struck the bus just before 11 A.M.

Sixteen people were killed after a bus was crushed by a boulder on Skardu Road in Gilgit-Baltistan, Rondu Sub-divisional Police Officer (SDPO) Mohammad Hassan said on Sunday.

Rondu Assistant Commissioner Miraj Alam told Islamabad Telegraph that 18 people were travelling in the bus coming from Rawalpindi, two of whom were dropped off at their stations. The bus was hit by a boulder in Tangos area on the Jaglot-Skardu Road late Saturday, burying all passengers under the debris. Rescue work began in the morning, he added.

Alam said that Rescue 1122 and Frontier Works Organisation (FWO) took part in the relief work. Later, in a statement, SDPO Hassan said that the rescue work has been completed. “Sixteen bodies have been recovered from the debris of the bus. Six of them have been identified, including the driver and conductor,” he said.

He said that all the bodies were being transferred to the district hospital. “Rescue work has been completed,” he further said, adding that the road was being cleared now.

”The rock proceeded over the edge of the large flat area down through several hundred feet of trees onto the highway below where it collided with the bus,” Mr. Miraj Aslam said, reading from a statement. Boulder Weighed Several Tons

The boulder, which the authorities said weighed several tons and measured 17 feet across and 6 feet high, struck the bus just before 11 A.M

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