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40 Killed in India Bus Accident

July 19, 2004

CALCUTTA, India (AP) _ A speeding bus flipped over and fell into a roadside ditch in eastern India on Monday, killing at least 40 passengers and injuring several others, police said.

The accident occurred near English Bazar town in West Bengal State, said Tarak Pal, the town’s police chief. At least 40 dead bodies were pulled out of the bus, but more may be trapped inside, he said.

Most people apparently drown in the water-filled ditch, Pal said. Rescue workers pulled bodies out through the windows after cranes lifted the vehicle out of water.

Nine people were rescued and taken to a nearby hospital, he said.

It was not immediately clear how many people were in the bus, Pal said. The vehicle could accommodate up to 70 passengers.

The accident happened about 185 miles north of Calcutta, the state capital.

Update hourly