Home>News Center>World

Ninety die in fuel tanker crash in Iran
Updated: 2004-06-26 00:24

A gasoline truck exploded after smashing into a bus in southeast Iran late Thursday, killing 90 people and injuring more than 100, officials said Friday.

"The disaster is so grave we cannot identify faces and cannot differentiate between corpses," Haidar Ali Nourai, governor of the southeastern city of Zahedan, told state television.

The burnt out bus is seen in this video still image. [Reuters]

He said the accident happened when the truck lost control and plowed into a bus waiting at Nosratabad police checkpoint. The fireball then enveloped five other buses.

Television showed bodies charred beyond recognition. A gold watch was seen stuck to an arm scorched to the bone.

Red Crescent spokesman Mehran Nourbakhsh said 90 people had died in the blast and 114 had been injured. The aid group has sent 40 workers to the scene.

Zahedan parliamentarian Hossein Ali Shahriari said the checkpoint was badly positioned on a sharp bend.

"Inspections at this checkpoint use stone-age methods," he told the ISNA student new agency. "We always see lots of buses and cars caught in queues at this road block."

Iran has one of the highest road accident rates in the world, averaging five deaths every two hours.

Nosratabad lies on the road from Zahedan to Bam, which was hit by an earthquake last year that killed more than 20,000 people.

Zahedan is about 30 km (20 miles) from the Pakistan border as the crow flies.

The road is dotted with checkpoints because it is the main route for drugs smugglers taking opiates from Afghanistan and Pakistan to the West.

Around 300 people were killed and 450 injured in February when a train laden with gasoline and fertilizer exploded in the northeast of the country after derailing.

The force of the blast near Nishapur razed village homes to the ground, crushing people under crumbled mud brick walls.

  Today's Top News     Top World News

Fire caused by lightning rages in northern forests



Dozens of drug dealers executed in China



US arms sales to Taiwan sparks tension



Israel's deputy PM visits father's Harbin grave



Poor school kids get letter from Blair



Reservoir flow to save waterfowl


  Blasts rock turbulent city of Fallujah
  Ninety die in fuel tanker crash in Iran
  Two U.S. marines killed in Afghanistan
  MSN to expand free e-mail storage to 250MB
  Israel carries out Nablus arrest operation
  Indian tycoon hosts lavish wedding
  Go to Another Section  
  Story Tools  
  News Talk  
  Does the approval of UN resolution on Iraq end daily bloodshed there?