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Wednesday, 22 August, 2001, 23:53 GMT 00:53 UK
Zambia bus crashes kill over 100
Three serious bus crashes in Zambia have killed more than 100 people, including a British medical student.

About 40 people were burnt to death last Saturday, near the town of Kapiri Mposhi, about 200km (120 miles) north of the capital, Lusaka.

The fire was apparently caused when plastic drums of petrol ignited, after the bus had a puncture in a front tyre and slid off the road.

Thirty-four other passengers have been admitted to hospital, and the death toll is expected to rise.

An earlier crash near the same town killed at least 27 people.

Plunge

British woman Caroline Long, 23, from Glasgow was among 39 people who died when a bus from Malawi to Zambia plunged into a ravine near the border.

She had been travelling in the region with her friend Ishbel MacDougall, also 23.

Ms MacDougall was trapped in the wreckage for 14 hours after the crash on 11 August, before being rescued and flown to South Africa for treatment.

She reportedly had to have one leg amputated and has been left partially paralysed.

Both women had been studying medicine at Newcastle University.

Serious road accidents occur frequently in Zambia, where road and vehicles are both poorly maintained, especially in rural areas.

Overcrowding is also a problem, increasing the risk of death or major injury in the event of a crash.

See also:

16 Aug 01 | Africa
Kenya bus crash kills 23
21 Aug 01 | Country profiles
Country profile: Zambia
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