Namibia: Schoolchildren Survive Accident

A timely reaction by an alert bus driver transporting 63 pupils on Saturday averted a possible head-on collision with a cattle truck, which had veered into the bus' lane.

This was confirmed by police spokesperson Edwin Kanguatjivi yesterday who said although no one was killed in the accident, eight pupils sustained slight injuries. The pupils are from Gqaina Primary School at Gobabis. "A bus and a truck, moving in opposite directions collided, causing the truck to overturn. I understand that eight pupils were slightly injured and were taken to the hospital for treatment," said Kanguatjivi.

According to eye witnesses at the scene of the accident, about 20 km outside the capital, the driver of a truck transporting 18 head of cattle lost control of the vehicle at a bend on the hilly Windhoek-Hosea Kutako International Airport road.

This caused the trailer of the truck to unhook from the truck and veer into the lane of the oncoming school bus. The bus driver, however, managed to steer the bus to the left shoulder of the road and then sped up to avoid a collision.

The truck trailer side-swiped the right side of the bus.

All the cattle being transported in the truck had to be put down, as many of them landed under the trailer in a ditch.

The truck driver and a passenger were reportedly also slightly injured in the accident, although this could not be independently confirmed.

Namibian activist Sean Naude, who was among those first at the scene, said after colliding with the school bus, the truck rolled down the side of the mountain with the cattle. He said the children, who were in shock after the accident, were on their way to Gobabis from Windhoek.

Naude said that another bus was brought in for the schoolchildren to continue their journey to Gobabis.

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