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Luang Prabang Bus Crash Death Toll Rises

Seven people are now confirmed dead from a bus crash in Luang Prabang after officials reported a 23 year old man died in hospital several hours after the accident on November 22.

The provincial transportation section head, Mr Sing Anousone, said yesterday Luang Prabang hospital medics informed him that one more person had died on the evening following the crash.

“Next week, our section will talk to the Ministry of Public Works and Transport to prevent this type of accident occurring again,” Mr Sing said. “The Vientiane Transport Department must remind businesses to show more responsibility when they send buses out on the road, both to the northern and southern provinces.” “It’s crucial that drivers are in good health when they are working, and there must be an improvement in time management so that drivers are well rested in between jobs,” he added.

The accident happened on November 22, on Road No. 13 north between Vientiane and Luang Prabang province.

The overnight bus left Vientiane at 7:30pm on November 21, carrying 32 people headed for Luang Prabang. Early the next morning, at Kewmarknao 2 village in Xiengngeun district, the driver fell asleep at the wheel and the bus careened off the road and down a 75 metre hill. Five people died instantly – three women, one man, and a novice monk.

A French woman died in hospital soon afterwards, while the latest report takes the toll to seven dead and 26 injured. Mr Sing said a security guard onboard the bus had recounted his recollection of the accident. The man saw the driver miss a turn, before the bus began to drift across the road. The guard shouted at the driver, but it was too late.

“This is the first time there’s been a crash in the 10 years that the VIP bus service has been operating between Vientiane and Luang Prabang province. We will act quickly to solve any underlying problems in the system to make sure such a tragedy never happens again,” he added.

published with the permission of Vientiane Times