Bus falls off viaduct in Brazil, killing at least 17

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At least 17 people have died and 27 were injured after the bus they were in collided with a truck, teetered on a bridge and then plunged 45ft in the southeastern state of Minas Gerais on Friday.

The bus was traveling on the 217-mile marker of highway BR-381 in city of João Monlevade when it was involved in the crash with the tractor trailer at approximately at 1.30pm.

The impact of the accident forced the bus off the lane and left it dangling near the damaged concrete guard rail.

Preliminary reports from the Federal Highway Patrol indicate the driver abandoned the bus with the passengers inside.

According to Brazilian news outlet G1, motorists at the scene said the bus driver attempted to put the coach in reverse.

Witnesses said that at least four people left the bus moment before it plunged 45 feet to the railroad track below.

Video posted by concerned motorists showed the bus wreckage in flames while fire fighters canvassed the area looking for survivors.

At least three of the injured passengers, including two children, were airlifted and taken João XXIII Emergency Hospital, in Belo Horizonte, and listed in critical condition.

The crash is the second deadly accident in a week in Brazil after a collision between a bus and a truck killed 42 people in Taguaí, São Paulo, last Wednesday. Authorities declared 40 people dead at the scene and two others at a local hospital.

 

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