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Bus crash sparks fire on bus, kills 9

February 18, 2015

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Nine people burned to death when the bus they were riding on hit a light post and burst into flames, police said Wednesday.

Police inspector Danielle Peres said the crash occurred Wednesday morning when the driver lost control of the bus on a rain-soaked road in the Rio de Janeiro district of Sao Goncalo.

She said the vehicle then hit the light post, loosening a power transformer that then fell on the bus and exploded, “causing the fire that destroyed the vehicle.”

Another nine people who survived the crash were rushed to nearby hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries, she said.

Peres said police were trying to determine if the bus driver was speeding when the accident occurred.

“I heard a loud explosion and I ran out of my house to see what had happened,” the website of the O Globo newspaper quoted Miguel Barbosa as saying. He said that employees of a nearby gasoline station helped him rescue four passengers.

“But unfortunately most of the other passengers were unable to get out of the bus. The heat inside was very intense,” he said.

Wilian Lemos, one of the injured passengers, told O Globo he was sitting at the rear of the bus and managed to escape by jumping out a window with the help of the men at the gasoline station.

Update hourly