18 bodies found, 23 feared dead in India bridge collapse

Rescue workers in India found 18 bodies on Friday after a bridge collapsed over a flooded river earlier in the week.

Twenty-three people are feared dead after two buses and a car plunged into the Savitri river when an aging bridge on a highway linking the states of Maharashtra and Goa caved in on Wednesday.

More than 100 emergency workers in boats, helicopters and on foot scoured the site, looking for survivors and the vehicles.

"We have recovered 18 bodies until now, of which 15 have been identified. One victim is the driver of a bus," said Sushma Satpute, sub-divisional magistrate of Raigad district.

Constant rain was hampering search operations.

"It is raining heavily and the river is fast-flowing, so it is almost impossible to venture into the water and track where the vehicles are," Satpute said by phone from the site.

Local police, disaster management personnel, Indian Navy divers and coastguard and Indian Air Force helicopters were involved in the operation.

State authorities have come under attack for the accident, given the lack of maintenance for the 88-year-old bridge, the Hindustan Times newspaper reported.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has ordered a judicial investigation as well as a safety audit of all old bridges.

Last update: Fri, 05/08/2016 - 12:36


More from World

UN: About 45,000 flee Gambia due to political crisis

About 45,000 people have fled from Gambia to neighbouring Senegal amid a threat of military intervention as autocrat...

Vietnam gets sixth submarine from Russia

Vietnam has received its sixth attack submarine from Russia amid rising Chinese assertiveness in the South China Sea...

"The good times are over": Chinese fear Trump impact on economy

Many of his fellow citizens still admire Donald Trump, but Chinese exporter Cai Jipeng has been dreading...

Reports: 170 people killed by Nigerian airstrike on refugee camp

As many as 170 people were killed by an accidental military airstrike on a refugee camp in north-east Nigeria, aid...

Islamic State destroys facade of Palmyra amphitheatre

Islamic State militants have destroyed the facade of the Roman amphitheatre in the ancient city of Palmyra in...