KASUR/SAHIWAL/MUZAFFARGARH: As many as 23 people were killed while around 50 suffered injuries in three road accidents in Kasur, Muzaffargarh and Sahiwal areas on Tuesday.

In Kasur, six people were killed while more than 40, including 10 women, suffered critical injuries when two racing vans overturned on Ferozepur Road near Bhallo Stop in Saddar police precincts.

According to police, most of the passengers were government employees, labourers, and factory workers who were going to their workplaces in Lahore.

Two vans were on their way to Lahore when near Bhallo Stop the vehicles collided their sides and overturned one after the other.

According to some eyewitnesses, the vehicles were racing.

A large number of people gathered at the scene and they started rescuing the injured. Later, Rescue 1122 shifted the injured to the DHQ Hospital.

According to Rescue sources, three passengers -- Tariq Ali, Wajid Hussain and Irfan Ali -- died on the spot while as many others, including Abdul Aziz and Nasir Ali, who were referred to the Lahore General Hospital from DHQ Hospital, succumbed to their injuries on way to hospital.

According to Rescue 1122 personnel, Muhammad Akbar, over 40 passengers including 10 women sustained critical injuries and were rushed to the DHQ Hospital.

The injured people include Nasreen Bibi, Razia, Rukhsana, Habiba, Sakeena, Saima Bibi, Zeenat, Reehana, Iqra, Shakeela, Khalid, Talib, Tayyab, Sarwar, Adil, Tahir, Nazar Muhammad, Aftab, Waqas, Imran and Shoaib.

Owing to severity of the incident, the district administration declared emergency in the DHQ Hospital.

Chief Minister Usman Buzdar took notice of the incident and directed the district administration to provide best possible treatment to the injured.

Provincial Minister Asad Khokhar also visited the DHQ Hospital and inquired after the passengers.

Police were looking into the matter.

According to locals, there was no one on Ferozepur Road to control the unruly traffic and reckless speed of vehicles.

In Muzaffargarh, eight people lost their lives in a road accident while four others suffered critical injuries on Alipur Road, some 30-km away from the city.

Locals said a Multan-bound passenger van hit an Alipur-bound mini-truck laden with grapes. They said the van driver tried to save a motorcyclist when the vehicle hit the truck. As a result eight people died on the spot and four suffered injuries.

Rescue 1122 recovered the bodies and shifted the injured people to Rohallan Wali Hospital.

The deceased have been identified as Ismael, Mohammad Irshad, Wali Mohammad, Shabbir Khan, Ghulam Yaseen, Allah Bachaya, Haji Allah Bukhsh and Mohammad Iqbal. Both drivers are among the deceased.

In Sahiwal, nine passengers, including three women, were killed and five others received critical injuries when a dumper truck struck against a coaster at 17 Wali Pulli on Pakpattan-Arifwala Road.

Reports said a dumper truck laden with bricks hit a Multan-bound coaster as a result Sarwar (40), Umer Daraz (35), Muhammad Yousaf (35), Maqbool Ahmed (45), Shaukat Ali (35), Zareen Abbas (40), Wazerian Bibi (42) Rabia Bibi (35) and an unidentified child (10) were killed.

The injured were shifted to Pakpattan DHQ Hospital.

The dumper drive managed his escape.

Published in Dawn, November 20th, 2019