NYAMASHEKE – Four people died on the spot in a car accident in Nyungwe national park near Uwinka tourist reception centre in Bushekeri Sector, Nyamasheke District in Western Province.
The passengers were going for Christmas celebrations.
The accident occurred on Monday morning. Eyewitnesses said the driver lost control of a taxi omnibus after getting a puncture.
The dead were identified as Jean Nzabumunyurwa, 29, Vedaste Kamanzi, 37, Innocent Habimana, 25, and Grace Uwase, 32. Their bodies and the injured passengers were taken to Gihundwe Hospital in Rusizi District. The taxi was going to Cyangugu (in Nyamasheke) from Butare (in Huye).
“After the driver lost control, the next thing I knew was that we were in a valley. I believe over-speeding was the main cause of the accident because the incident happened when the driver was trying to negotiate three sharp corners without reducing the speed,” Josephine Maniraguha, a survivor of the crash, said.
Police authorities said that the accident could have been caused by overloading since there were 26 passengers onboard instead of 18.
“According to our investigations and observations, the incident could have occurred due to overloading,” a police officer at the scene said.
The driver, whose names had not been availed by press time, is on the run. Two passengers who sustained severe injuries have since been transferred to King Faisal Hospital in Kigali City. Eyewitnesses said that the driver himself sustained injuries but after the accident, he immediately got up, and limped into a nearby forest. “I don’t think he will survive,” a woman said.