India bridge collapse: 22 feared dead after two buses plunge into river between Mumbai and Goa

80 rescuers, including divers, searching for missing

Samuel Osborne
Wednesday 03 August 2016 10:42
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The old bridge on the Mumbai-Goa highway collapsed in a flooded river in western Maharashtra state in India around midnight on Tuesday, 2 August, 2016
The old bridge on the Mumbai-Goa highway collapsed in a flooded river in western Maharashtra state in India around midnight on Tuesday, 2 August, 2016

At least 22 people are feared dead after two buses plunged into a flooded river after an old bridge collapsed in western India.

Rescuers have not found the buses or any survivors hours after the single-lane bridge on the Mumbai-Goa highway collapsed around midnight local time on Tuesday, Devendra Fadnavis, Maharashtra state's chief minister, has said.

The two state-run bases were carrying a total of 18 passengers, two drivers and two conductors, he added.

He also said the bridge, constructed in the 1940s, probably collapsed because it was buffeted by strong currents from the Savitri River, which was flooded by monsoon rains.

OP Singh, chief of the National Disaster Response Force, said 80 rescuers, including divers, rushed to the area, but that their efforts were hampered by heavy rains.

A helicopter hovered over the area trying to spot the buses or any bodies floating in the swollen river.

Various parts of India have been lashed by heavy downpours lately. The monsoon season runs from June to September.

Additional reporting by agencies

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