At least 16 people have died, and several others were injured in a nasty road crash involving a passenger bus and trailer along the Kampala-Gulu highway on Friday morning, the police in Kamdini district have confirmed.
The bus belonging to Robyln bus company is said to have rammed into a stationary trailer that was allegedly loading at Adebe trading center just one kilometer to corner Kamdini checkpoint at around midnight, according to North Kyoga Police Spokesperson SP Jimmy Patrick Okema.
“It’s alleged that a bus registration number UAT 259P which belongs to Roblyn bus company traveling from Kampala to Gulu ramped into a stationary trailer at around midnight of January 6, 2023, along Kampala-Gulu highway,” Okema said.
“Police traffic and general duty visited the scene immediately on receiving the report and confirmed 11 people died on the spot while four others died from the hospital meaning so far a total of 15 dead bodies and yet to be identified number of survivors rushed to Atapara Hospital, some in critical condition for treatment,” SP Okema added in a police statement on Friday morning.
However, he later said another body was found at the accident scene, bringing the death toll to 16 so far.
The cause of the accident was yet to be established by press time. Still, according to the regional police PRO, preliminary findings have pointed at the wrong parking by the trailer driver with no warning signs.
Okema called on the calmness of the public at such a disturbing moment before consoling the grieved families that have lost their dear ones.
“It’s a regrettable incident, we call for calmness from members of the public, our condolences to the bereaved families,” he said.
At the time of filing the story, the dead bodies had been conveyed to Anyeke Health IV pending postmortem and autopsy report as the scene of crime officers kicked off with investigations at the accident scene.
The number of crashes and crash fatalities on Ugandan roads remains unacceptably high, with an estimated 12,589 and 4,159 respectively as reported in the Annual Traffic and Crime Report by the Uganda Police Force (UPF) in 2021.
More than half of these fatalities are among vulnerable road users: pedestrians, passengers, cyclists, and motorcyclists.
On Tuesday, Jan 3rd, the Traffic Police spokesperson, Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Faridah Nampiima revealed that 104 road crashes were registered around the country between December 30, 2022, and January 1. She said of these, 28 led to the loss of lives.
According to the traffic police statement, the most significant cause of the crashes was reckless driving where 20 fatal, 39 serious injuries, and 17 minor accidents were registered.