30 dead after bus plunges into river in Peru

The wrecked remains of a passenger bus that plunged into a 50 meter deep ravine of the Tarma River, in Tarma, some 245 northeast of Lima, Peru. Photo / AFP
The wrecked remains of a passenger bus that plunged into a 50 meter deep ravine of the Tarma River, in Tarma, some 245 northeast of Lima, Peru. Photo / AFP

At least 30 people have died after a bus plunged off a highway into a river in central Peru, authorities say.

"So far, I have 30 confirmed dead, but the police are continuing to search for victims," said Rodoricao Cubas Hurtado, chief of the local highway police.

Cubas said nine people were still unaccounted for, and the search for additional victims was focused on the vehicle, which was still submerged in the river.

The accident occurred in the town of San Ramon, in Peru's Junin region. Officials said numerous injured passengers were taken to nearby hospitals.

The bus was carrying 52 passengers at the time of the accident, and police said they suspect that the driver may have fallen asleep behind the wheel.

- AFP

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