Three dozen school children have died in an accident, as an overloaded and speeding passenger bus overturned on the Killer Range (Deadly Salt Range) on Kallar Kahar - Lilla Section of Islamabad - Lahore Motorway (M2).
The overloaded Seventy-Two Seater Bus, which was carrying more than a hundred school children and five school staff members, skidded at the accident prone Killer Range due to brake failure. The unfortunate passengers of Faisalabad’s Millat Grammar School were on their way back from a school trip to popular tourist sites of Khewra Salt Mines and Kallar Kahar Resort.
Twenty-six people died on the spot, Chakwal DPO Ali Mohsin said. Among those dead were students, the Vice-Principal and the Driver and Helper (Conductor) of the bus. The victims were taken to the Fauji Foundation Hospital in Kallar Kahar and the District Headquarters Hospital in Chakwal (The disctrict Headquarter).
"The driver informed one of the teachers first about the brake failure. But the vice-principal told everyone to stay calm and prepare to jump out of the bus," said injured tenth-grader Muhammad Bilal. But before the passengers could make their moves, the bus overturned. "As the bus was overloaded, some children were standing. They are the ones who died or are severely injured."
The first response came instantly from the Frontier Works Organization (FWO), as FWO ambulances arrived at the scene along with a crane to lift the bus and allow rescue workers to pull out bodies and injured passengers. Rescue 1122 workers also arrived soon after and assisted FWO teams.
It has been learnt that the Principal of Millat Grammar School Faisalabad showed high level of irresponsibility and refused to hire another bus and thus packed too many students into one bus – evidently saving money at the expense of student safety on a trip through the Killer Range.