Authorities in Haiti say 23 people have died after the driver of a truck carrying loads of rubble lost control of his vehicle in a hilly area of the impoverished Caribbean nation’s capital.
“Between 26 and 30 people have been killed and 57 injured. We are looking for the driver,” said Highway Police chief Will Dimanche following the accident, which is said to have occurred on the thoroughfare of Route de Delmas 33 in Port-au-Prince.
According to witnesses, the truck, weighed down with piles of concrete, steel, and others debris (all remnants of Haiti’s devastating 2010 earthquake), sped down a divided two-lane roadway when the driver lost control, struck a small bus and ran onto the sidewalk, hitting pedestrians and street merchants before flipping over in front the national television headquarters.
Sa’wPanse.com quotes one witness’ account of the scene following the Port-au-Prince accident:
“When I arrived on the scene there was mass chaos as police officers tried to control the crowds. Dead bodies littered the streets and body parts could be seen in crushed cars. Even president Martelly made an appearance and could be seen from the Haiti National Television balcony. I quickly left the scene as bulldozers started clearing the debris and there were concerns that they might disturb the high-tension wires overhead causing more casualties. The entire scene was a horrible mess.”
While there were no immediate reports about the cause of the horrible truck crash, authorities speculate it was due to brake failure in the rubble-laden vehicle.