National / World

Bangalore-Hyderabad bus catches fire, 45 dead

Bangalore-Hyderabad bus catches fire, 45 dead


Hyderabad, Oct 30 (IANS): As many as 45 passengers were burnt to death and five others injured early Wednesday when an air-conditioned bus caught fire in Andhra Pradesh's Mehabubnagar district, police said.

The private bus, proceeding to Hyderabad from Bangalore, caught fire after hitting a culvert around 5.20 a.m. near Palem in Kottakota mandal, about 150 km from here.

Besides the driver and cleaner, only five passengers escaped the horrific disaster. The injured passengers were shifted to a hospital. The driver and cleaner, who escaped unhurt, are being questioned by police.

Flames engulfed the bus in no time as the diesel tanker burst after hitting the culvert, Mahabubnagar Superintendent of Police Nagendra Kumar said quoting witnesses.

Initially, there was confusion on the number of passengers in the bus.

Transport Minister Botsa Satyanarayana told reporters in Hyderabad that 45 people were killed.

He said the Volvo bus, belonging to Jabbar Travels, had a capacity for 43 passengers but was carrying 50 people.

The passengers were asleep when the accident took place, leaving no time for them to escape. The victims were charred beyond recognition.

People from nearby village said the bus was reduced to ashes within minutes. The first ambulance reached nearly an hour later.

According to one of the survivors, some people broke the windows to jump out. But others were not lucky. He said the door was also locked, leaving no escape route for most passengers.

Preliminary investigation by police revealed that speeding caused the accident. The transport minister said there was no speed limit for Volvo buses.

Botsa said the bus was registered in Anantapur district in the name of Diwakar Road Lines and Jabbar Travels had taken it on lease.

Police detained the manager of Jabbar Travels in Hyderabad and took him to Mahabubnagar for questioning.

Nagendra Kumar said a list of only 29 passengers was received from the private bus operator. Other passengers are believed have boarded the bus at Hindupur and Anantapur.

The bus left Bangalore at 10 p.m. Tuesday and was scheduled to reach Hyderabad at 6.30 a.m.

Policemen and forensic experts retrieved the charred remains of the passengers and keeping them under a tent put up near the scene on the Bangalore-Hyderabad highway.

The forensic experts, from Hyderabad, will conduct DNA tests to identity the bodies.

Heartrending scenes were witnessed at the scene as rescue workers found the body of a child on a mother's lap. Both were charred.

Police have identified three victims.

Mahabubnagar District Collector M. Girija Shankar said five passengers were shifted to the DRDO Apollo Hospital in Hyderabad.

Anxious relatives of some of the passengers rushed to Jabbar Travels office here for information. However, the private operator did not have the list of passengers and other details.

Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy directed the district collector and superintendent of police to conduct a thorough investigation.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as well as Kiran Reddy and other political leaders of Andhra Pradesh expressed shock and anguish over the deaths.

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Comment on this article

  • m.seethabanu, madurai

    Mon, Nov 18 2013

    MR.AMARNATH SIR,Very sad incident. Pray for the soul of victims to be rest in peace.

    DisAgree Agree [1] Reply Report Abuse

  • sanjay.s, bellary

    Fri, Nov 8 2013

    before starting the journey the bus operator must give safety awareness about how to operate a fire extinguisher and emergency Exit

    DisAgree Agree [1] Reply Report Abuse

  • D.Ram Rohan Rao, Hyderabad

    Mon, Nov 4 2013

    The central locking system is the main culprit.The design should be modified.Why the culvert is obstructing the way.streaming the roads near constriction should be avoided.The slow moving car also a cause.

    DisAgree [1] Agree Reply Report Abuse

  • Shivanand, Bangalore

    Thu, Oct 31 2013

    May god peace to all souls who died in the accident. By seeing this incident we only are getting tears, than imagine the situation of those family members who lost their beloved ones.......

    DisAgree Agree [6] Reply Report Abuse

  • Rudolf Rodrigues, Mangalore/Mumbai

    Thu, Oct 31 2013

    Very tragic accident! May the deceased soul's RIP!! Reportedly, the bus turned to ashes in minutes as most of the passengers were fast asleep, a confluence of unfortunate events led to the sudden disaster!! Nothing but destiny!!!

    DisAgree Agree [2] Reply Report Abuse

  • MANISH, Mangalore

    Thu, Oct 31 2013

    The Transsport authority should lay down rules that the door in the VOLVO and any other Private busses should not be locked at anytime(also during night). It once happened to when i was travelling in VOLVO to bangalore in the night. I had got nature call so urgently that i shouted for conducter to open the door but unfortunately he could'nt hear me because of the sound and the conductor had locked the door from outside and slept. Then i passed the urine in a empty plastic bottle.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [4] Reply Report Abuse

  • haniel, manipal/udupi

    Thu, Oct 31 2013

    60% to 70% people are unaware of emergency exit...

    DisAgree Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • K K Bhosle , Bellary

    Thu, Oct 31 2013

    if it culvert is there , road authority should diaplay sign for speed control , such messages may could help to drivers to reduce the speed and avoid such disasters

    DisAgree [2] Agree [1] Reply Report Abuse

  • Devendra , Bangalore

    Thu, Oct 31 2013

    Festive Season.. Time to make loads of money.. Why need of maintainance which may result in loosing money... Better to take chance..

    This is the thinking most of the transporter carring and the result is in the front of every one..

    DisAgree Agree [4] Reply Report Abuse

  • rajesh, bangalore

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    very sad to hear,I got a doubt, bus may be loaded with explosives or highly flammable things in its storage area under passengers cabin, that may be a reason for spreading fire in no time and charred everyone in minutes other wise it will take long time to reach fire on the passenger cabin, agencies should investigate what was bus carrying in storage compartments.

    DisAgree [3] Agree [8] Reply Report Abuse

  • Chethan, kinnigoli

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    It is said that the bus had no insurance and no tax paid...

    DisAgree [2] Agree Reply Report Abuse

  • Joseph F. Gonslaves, Bannur, Puttur / Mangalore

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Great Tragedy

    May God bless the survived and wipe out their tears and comfort them.


    DisAgree Agree [5] Reply Report Abuse

  • sathish . R, Mangalore

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Really a sad news. Please don't blame only RTO and Govt. for all accidents.Indians are greedy for money, World safety standards are not working in India because of Indians. Social responsibility among Indians are very less, we leave everything on god. We need stick for everything to follow the rules. We Indians even don't leave medicines to make duplicate and make money out of it. At the end why we have to blame only Govt?? We need money at any cost at anybody's life........

    DisAgree [1] Agree [29] Reply Report Abuse

  • Justice smith, Dubai

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Do we have any system of showing the emergency doors of the volvo buses to passengers before departure. These doors are electronically operated. I was stuck in volvo bus /the driver was unable to release the hand brake and bus will never move without releasing the hand brake. travel continued in a new bus.
    Question here 1) all long road buses should have the system to show the passenger emergency doors for exit.It will take years India to develop laws.45 people burnt to death....transport minister must sucide.. Ji hind

    DisAgree [1] Agree [18] Reply Report Abuse

  •, calgary,

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    May their souls rest in peace
    Bus driver should have taken risks save lives.
    a). Not sure whether is safety alarm in buses.
    b). Safety exit doors at least 2 on each side.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [7] Reply Report Abuse

  • nagesh nayak, bangalore

    Wed, Oct 30 2013










    DisAgree [12] Agree [42] Reply Report Abuse


    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    volvo buses/vehicles are known for thier very high standards of safety in all respects. this incident is very surprising and unfortunate.

    DisAgree Agree [11] Reply Report Abuse

  • pruthvi, sakalashpure

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Very sad to hear this. there was 1 of my cousin brother who is a father of 2years old kid,this as happened cos of not proper maintenance and negligence of entire Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation who doesn't even set a speed limit to a Volvo bus....

    DisAgree [4] Agree [4] Reply Report Abuse

  • habeeb, surathkal

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    DisAgree [1] Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • Flavian, Mangalore/Kuwait

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    This inferno reminds me of the bad AI Express disaster At Mangalore runway.

    Pre-caution or emergency safety measures may reduce the impact in some ways but the speed beyond control is a root cause for all such calamities. Limit the speed and drive cautiously, rest in God’s hands.

    Heart-felt sympathies to the bereaved family members.

    May the departed souls rest in peace.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [20] Reply Report Abuse

  • Af, mangalore

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Your comment is appriciable,
    but one thing - after the delhi gang rape case how many buses are removed thier tinted black glass covers?
    our indian people just protesting to hang the culprits but do not bother about how to avoid such incidents in future, who dares to hold the colars of trafic ruler RTO and ask for proper actions?
    there is no value for human life anyway.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [12] Reply Report Abuse

  • Sandesh Shetty, Bangalore/Kudla

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Very sad incident. Pray for the soul of victims to be rest in peace.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [20] Reply Report Abuse

  • Dr.Shankaranarayan, Abu Dhabi/Mangalore

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Very sad to hear. Horrible accident. Poor passengers RIP.

    DisAgree Agree [24] Reply Report Abuse

  • Roshan, bedra

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Nowadays fire supression pyrogen cylinders available, small in shape, can easily hooks up near passenger seats and incase emergency driver can operate it in single push button. It also opens automatically during emergencies sensing through heat sensors .may their souls rest in peace.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [28] Reply Report Abuse


    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    In Private buses there is no immediate compensation for victims like govt.buses except Insurance settlement of the vehicle after a long fight at the court.It is better to implement govt buses everywhere for public transport.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [16] Reply Report Abuse

  • meena, mangalore

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    oh my god! no words to say

    DisAgree Agree [19] Reply Report Abuse

  • L Saldanha, Mangalore/ BAH

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Sad incident but this was an accident waiting to happen.

    I used to frequent this route and the Jabber Travels in the early 1990's.

    The driver and staff make money by collecting extra passengers on the way & placing wooden stools between seats in the aisles of the bus.

    It used to be very uncomfortable as some of them used to light up in the bus as well.

    Other extra passengers would be made to sit opposite the driver on a wooden bench.

    This is why the seating capacity is 40 and the death toll is much more.

    All have their hands dirty. The driver, traffic police, RTO, inter state border checkpost staff ... everybody.

    RIP unfortunate passegers.

    DisAgree Agree [49] Reply Report Abuse


    Wed, Oct 30 2013


    DisAgree [3] Agree [15] Reply Report Abuse

  • satyajit , manjinady

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Having travelled in the same bus type outside India in Turkey and the EU , I can say that all seats compulsorily have seat belts ...whereas here in India we seat these only on the front seats !

    safety hammers are missing in all buses we see here ...thats because someone decides to take it home to hammer their heads .And why are these hammers important lifesaving aids ? ITS BECAUSE THE WINDOWS MARKED AS " EMERGENCY WINDOWS " ARE OF A DIFFERENT GLASS GRADE AS COMPARED TO OTHER WINDOWS . These windows can be broken open with these hammers .

    The first thing one should do as soon as you enter any vehicle ( bus , train , car , aircraft) is to check out the emergency exit/windows that you arent left guessing in situations like these .

    If only the RTO made these hammers ( which wouldnt cost much ) mandatory in all AC buses and if only the RTO made emergecy exits complulsory , so many lives can be saved .

    BTW , we need to praise KSRTC for many things ....their volvo buses have this emergency exits on B7Rs ( seat numbers 25 and 26 ) and their buses dont exceed 80 kph as they have speed governers on them .More than this , they rate their drivers based on fuel efficiency also .Hence any driving fast or accelrating hard wouldnt get as much bonus as someone else driving more carefully .

    But our RTO they really bother ? The less you speak about them the better .Its on us to be careful . Instead of saying the driver was "rash" its better if passengers reprimand any driver of the vehicle they are in for dangerous driving

    DisAgree [2] Agree [84] Reply Report Abuse

  • For Justice, Abu Dhabi / Ubar

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Wonderfull & usefull tips.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [26] Reply Report Abuse

  • Louis, Belthangady

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    your suggestions are most valuable and should reach to common people & concerned authorities to minimise / avoid such huge death toll.

    DisAgree Agree [26] Reply Report Abuse

  • Amin Bhoja, Patte / Riyadh

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    A tragic deaths A/c buses gives comfort while on your travel but without any proper safety to the passengers.Once the bus is on move the door to the cabin closed by bolt system from driver's cabin without any reach to the passengers while in emergency.The safety windows if there are poorly checked/marked or maintained either.The luxury buses are like a kind death traps on in any unwanted incidents like accidents or fire are sure money making machines. A story we see daily on our routine travel a daily life without any changes but life moves on!!!.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [18] Reply Report Abuse

  • Simom, Dubai

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Very sad incident!. Government, Bus owners, RTO all are behind money…. Who will suffer last a common man and his family… May be this is a wakeup call for everyone. Lots of people forms our native place are traveling Bangalore, Mumbai… before traveling anywhere check and note the emergency exits nearer to you… Its your life you have to take care of your life.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [14] Reply Report Abuse


    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Very sad n shocking news.I too condemn these type of buses, as there is no proper arrangement and equipment in case of emergency.

    DisAgree [4] Agree [9] Reply Report Abuse

  • Ranjith Rodrigues, udupi

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Indian a/c buses are designed poorly. They are death traps waiting to happen. There is no way to open a window as the windows are bolted down for a/c purposes. No passenger including the driver would know how to operate an emergency window in time of crisis. We just push our luck when we travel in one of these a/c buses. What a tragedy for their families during diwali vacation.

    DisAgree [6] Agree [20] Reply Report Abuse

  • Mark, Udyavara

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Very sad incident! This can happen to anything, anyone, anywhere. I pray for the departed souls.

    Can't imagine that a bus diesel tank burst can take away so many lives!

    A diligent investigation must be carried out to determine if there is any other factors.

    RTO should ensure that all a/c buses with fitted windows/glasses should provide maximum EXIST windows with proper, legible markings.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [18] Reply Report Abuse


    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Very very unfortunate and sad incident.Road safety in India is very poor...anyone can get a driving license...

    i cant imagine life and death difference is just a 10MM glass window sad RIP

    DisAgree [2] Agree [17] Reply Report Abuse

  • Dinesh Rao P, Bantwal

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Its the Central Locking System which did all the gravely blunder in this case!!! No proper guidance about the safety measures & procedures to the belowed passengers,, no proper Fire Alarm system,,accidents like these are bound to happen in future if no proper actions taken!!!

    DisAgree [5] Agree [15] Reply Report Abuse


    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Bus glass should be designed to break or to open easily in case of emergency...proper safety demo should b given before traveling....

    very sad all young people died who for sure tried their best to escape but not possible....

    death on road in public transport is unexepectable .there is serious problem in bus design....

    DisAgree [2] Agree [25] Reply Report Abuse

  • Dinesh Rao P, Bantwal

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Volvo buses, once an other name for Safety & Comfort,, but tragedies happening like these will leave them in shadow of fear & terror!!! Recently was travelling back from Mangalore in Airavata, AC was not working from the starting itself, Air Compressor burst at Kunigal, had to take Raja Hamsa to reach Bangalore, negligence & not proper maintainence would have cost our lives for ever!!!

    DisAgree [3] Agree [47] Reply Report Abuse

  • Anand, karkala

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Could have been reduced the nos just by alerting the passengers on time to jump out of the window.

    DisAgree [12] Agree [16] Reply Report Abuse

  • For Justice, Abu Dhabi / Ubar

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Oh! What a tragedy.Feel sorry for the beloved of the departed.R I P.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [35] Reply Report Abuse

  • Murugesh, Chennai

    Wed, Oct 30 2013

    Why this automatic emergency door was not opened.As per federal motors standard the emergency door were not enough.So volvo has done the recall for fitting additional doors for emergency..why Volvo has not done such things in india..

    DisAgree Agree [5] Reply Report Abuse

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