No fewer than 19 persons were killed and eight others injured in an auto crash at Yangoji-Gwagwalada Road, Abuja, on Sunday.
Dauda Biu, acting corps marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps, confirmed the figures to journalists when he visited the accident scene.
Mr Biu said the crash occurred minutes into Sunday and involved three vehicles – two Toyota Hiace buses with registration numbers MUB- 30 LG and DWR-985 XJ and an articulated vehicle.
“Out of the 31 victims, eight persons comprising of seven males and one female sustained various degrees of injuries, while 19 others were burnt beyond recognition.
“Investigation showed that the main causes of the crash were speed limit violation and wrongful overtaking, which eventually resulted in the loss of control,’’ he said.
According to him, the Toyota Hiace bus with Registration Number MUB- 30 LG crashed into the Citroen articulated vehicle and burst into flames, killing everyone on board.
“The second bus hit the first bus from behind and also caught fire. The fire melted the second bus with the Bauchi State number plate.
“It was coming from Takai, Kano State, while heading to Benin. The Citroen vehicle loaded chicken feeds from Zaria in Kaduna State and was heading to Akwa Ibom.
“The nineteen corpses were trapped but extricated by rescue operatives,’’ Mr Biu said.
He added that police had taken over the investigation and met with relevant authorities for the mass burial of 18 of the mutilated corpses.
He said the bodies could not be preserved for identification as they were burnt beyond recognition.
“Injured victims were taken to a nearby hospital in Kwali in the FCT, and one identified male corpse was deposited at the mortuary at Kwali General Hospital,’’ he said.
Mr Biu cautioned road users to avoid excessive speeding, wrongful overtaking and other bad driving behaviours.
He also re-emphasised that the corps would step up both sensitisation of the motoring public and enhance its patrol activities to deter traffic violators.
Mr Biu admonished the public to always call the FRSC toll-free line 122 and the National Traffic Radio 107.1 FM, which were always available for all road users to report emergencies at any given time.