JAKARTA: Eighteen people were killed and dozens injured yesterday when a bus plunged into a river as it returned from a church outing on Indonesia’s main island of Java, police said.
The bus was carrying passengers from a Jakarta church back to the capital after a visit to a hill resort when the accident happened at Cisarua in West Java province, local police spokesman Martinus Sitompul said.
It collided with a pick-up truck then crashed into a food stall before falling up to eight metres (26 feet) into the river. Sitompul said that 18 people were killed, 30 were seriously injured and 10 slightly hurt. “We suspect the brakes malfunctioned but that’s still being investigated,” he said.
Police were questioning the bus driver, who sustained light injuries, he said.
Fatal accidents are common on Indonesia’s poorly maintained roads, especially on densely populated Java island.
Java lies between Sumatra to the west and Bali to the east. Borneo lies to the north and Christmas Island to the south. It is the world’s 13th largest island.
More mountains and highlands help to split the interior into a series of relatively isolated regions.