Police say seven of the 23 injured are in critical condition
At least six people were killed and 23 others were injured in two separate incidents of head-on-collision between a bus and a truck in Sirajganj and Rajshahi on Tuesday.
In Sirajganj, at least five people were killed and 15 others were injured in a head-on collision between a bus and a truck at Konabari in Kamarkhand upazila.
One of the deceased was identified as Fazlul Haque, a 78-year-old freedom fighter from Bogra district. Identities of other victims are yet to be established, reports UNB.
The accident occurred around 7:30am on Bangabandhu Bridge West Link highway.
"The Mymensingh-bound bus ferrying passengers from Bogra crashed into the truck coming from the opposite direction this morning," said Officer-in-Charge of Bangabandhu Bridge west police station Mosaddek Hossain.
The impact of the collision was such that five people were killed on the spot, while 23 others sustained injuries, he said.
Those injured were immediately rushed to 250-bed Bangamata Sheikh Fazilatunnesa Mujib General Hospital. "Of the 15 injured, seven people are said to be in a critical condition," the officer said.
The bodies have been sent to the local hospital morgue for autopsy.
Meanwhile, in Rajshahi, another man died and at least eight others were injured in a head-on collision between a bus and a truck in the city.
The incident took place around 11am on Tuesday when smoke from burning trash covered the Citihat area, reducing visibility on the road.
Following the accident, Fire Service and Civil Defence rushed to the spot rescued the injured and sent them to Rajshahi Medical College Hospital (RMCH).
One of the victims was declared dead at the hospital. The deceased identified as Md Zaman was the truck driver.
Shah Makhdum police station OC Saiful Islam said: “The road has been cleared off. The injured are receiving treatment at the RMCH. After the legal process, the body of the victim will be handed over to the family.”
Road accidents in Bangladesh
Road accidents are one of the leading causes of deaths in Bangladesh, as 37,170 people were killed in 26,902 accidents across the country in the past five years.
In January 2021 alone, as many as 484 people were killed and 673 injured in 427 road accidents across Bangladesh -- a 25.58% rise year-on-year, according to Road Safety Foundation (RSF).
At least 445 lives were lost in 340 road accidents in January last year, RSF said on Saturday.
World Bank Report on road safety
As per a World Bank report, published in February 2020, Bangladesh needs to invest an estimated extra $7.8 billion over the next decade to halve its road crash fatalities.
The report attributed the high death rate on Bangladesh roads to a chronic lack of investment in systemic, targeted, and sustained road safety programs.
The annual road crash deaths per capita in Bangladesh are twice the average rate for high-income countries and five times that of the best-performing countries in the world, it said.
Children and the working-age population are most affected by road crash injuries in Bangladesh, the World Bank report added.