27 dead in Egypt bus, train accidents before Eid holiday
CAIRO // At least 22 people were killed in a bus collision and five died when a train derailed in separate accidents south of Cairo on Wednesday during a busy holiday travel time.
The bus collided with a truck in the south-western province of Wedi El Gedid, the Egyptian health ministry said.
It was not clear how many passengers were on the bus.
Traffic accidents are common in Egypt, where many of the country’s roads are not well-maintained and regulations are laxly enforced.
Separately, a train killed five people when it derailed after leaving Cairo for the southern city of Aswan, the health ministry said. It was carrying about 60 passengers.
Twenty-seven passengers were also hurt, with injuries ranging from abrasions to broken bones, the health ministry said.
The conductor hit the brakes when he spotted a problem with the tracks, causing three carriages to overturn near the village of Al-Ayyat, about 50 kilometers south of Cairo.
The accident halted train services from Cairo to provinces south of the capital for several hours before they were partially restored.
The accident came during one of the busiest travel times of the year, when millions of Egyptians leave Cairo and other big cities to head to their hometowns and villages for Eid Al Adha, which begins on Monday.
Al Ayyat was the scene of Egypt’s deadliest rail accident in 2002 when a cooking gas cylinder exploded on a train and led to a fire that killed 361 passengers.
Trains are often overcrowded in Egypt, adding to the safety risks.
* Agence France-Presse
Updated: September 7, 2016 04:00 AM