20 children killed when minibus hits truck in South Africa

A minibus and a truck collided on a road not far from Pretoria

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About 20 children were in the minibus when it collided with the truck, he said. Other kids were injured and dragged away from the wreck by people at the scene.

"The number now is at least 17 fatalities", Russel Meiring, ER24 spokesman said.

"The fire services had already extinguished the burning vehicle, which was found lying on its side".

After the crash, a fire started and emergency responders found about 13 children trapped inside the vehicle.

South Africa bus crash

An earlier tweet from the same account had said that 20 children were believed to have been killed, the clarification that two of the dead were teachers followed later.

An investigation into the crash is underway. The department said "this is a huge loss & we're deeply pained by the tragic news".

South Africa's transport minister expressed condolences to the families of the dead.

Despite sophisticated road networks, South Africa battles with a high rate of road fatalities blamed mostly on speeding, reckless driving, unroadworthy vehicles and failure to use seat belts.

The BBC reports that, according to South Africa's Road Traffic Management Corporation, 13,673 people died in traffic-related incidents in South Africa in a 12-month period from October 2015.

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