Three people died and 14 others were injured in Pursat province’s Bakan district on Saturday morning after they were thrown from a crude trailer and run over by a bus, officials said Sunday.
District police chief Neang Vuth said that 17 people had been riding in the wooden trailer, which was being towed by a tractor, on their way to a Buddhist ceremony when one of the tractor’s wheels fell off on National Road 5 in Snam Preah commune at about 8 a.m.
“The tractor’s left front wheel broke off and made the trailer swerve into the middle of the road,” he said. “Then a Ford pickup truck that was traveling behind the trailer hit the trailer, causing people to scatter all over the road.”
“Suddenly, a bus belonging to the PPS company, which had been traveling behind the pickup truck, ran over those people and killed one woman at the scene,” he said, adding that the drivers of both the truck and bus fled.
He identified the woman killed at the scene as Nhim Rin, 64, and said that another woman, Min Deab, 63, died on the way to the provincial referral hospital, while a teenage boy, Nim Van Y, 17, succumbed to his injuries at the hospital.
Of the 14 others, the police chief said, seven were seriously injured and seven suffered minor wounds, including the tractor’s driver.
Deputy provincial police chief Or Heang said the bus and pickup truck had been impounded at provincial police headquarters, while the tractor and trailer were being kept at the district police station.
“We will ask the prosecutor whether there can be a settlement, and if not, we will send documents to the prosecutor to take action according to the law,” he said.
Kong Sophal, the owner of PPS, said he met with the family of Nhim Rin, the woman who died at the scene, and would offer them compensation.
“This accident happened because the wheel of the tractor broke off, but I intend to solve the problem with the victim’s family,” he said.