Malappuram: Thirteen persons were killed and 25 others injured when a mini bus in which they were travelling rammed a tree and plunged down the road at Thelakkad near Perinthalmanna in the district on Friday.
The deceased have been identified as Mangalakuzhi Mariya (50), Faseela (17), Neethu (18), Cheriyaakkan, Salmanul Imthiyas (bus driver), Kavanayil Cherukki, Kavannayil Sabeera, Venniyath Fathimah, Madathodi Shamna, Kappu Thasni, Kozhipparambil Mubashira and Mankadakuzhi Sainaba.
The condition of six of the injured is stated to be critical, sources said.
Police said nine of the deceased were killed on the spot while the others died in hospital. Malappuram District collector said at least 42 passengers were in the bus when the mishap occurred. According to initial reports, the bus had hit a tree following tyre burst, he said.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said it was the worst road mishap in the State and that preliminary reports indicated overspeeding was the cause of the accident.
However, only a detailed enquiry would reveal the facts, he said, adding that strictly abiding by traffic rules was the only solution to contain the increase in the number of road accidents in the state.
"All arrangements have been made for the treatment of the injured and the autopsy on the 13 bodies would be conducted today itself, so they can be handed over to relatives," local legislator and State Municipalities Minister Manjalamkuzhi Ali said.
This is the second major road accident in Malappuram district in a week after the death of eight family members when their autorickshaw collided with a private bus at Thanur on August 30.