Twenty-six die as bus plunges off cliff in Peru

Photos, said to of the scene, uploaded to social media.
Photos, said to of the scene, uploaded to social media.PHOTOS: TWITTER

LIMA (AFP) - Twenty-six passengers died, including a child, and 22 were injured when a bus plummeted from a cliff in Peru early on Tuesday (Aug 31), police said, in the country's third multiple-victim transport accident in four days.

The accident happened on a narrow stretch of the Carretera Central road some 60km east of the capital Lima.

Police commander Cesar Cervantes said on told TV Peru there was a child among the dead and two among the injured.

There had been 63 passengers on the bus.

A search and rescue effort was under way for possible survivors and to recover bodies, the police department added on Twitter.

Cervantes said "recklessness" contributed to Tuesday's accident, adding that the bus had been travelling "at high speed."

It hit a rock and plunged into an abyss some 200 metres deep, according to survivor accounts.

On Sunday, 14 people died when two boats collided on the Amazon river in Peru. An undetermined number remain missing.

Two days earlier, another bus fell into a ravine in the country's south-east, killing 17 people.

Road accidents are common in the Andean country due to factors including speeding motorists, poorly-maintained highways, a lack of road signs, and poor traffic safety enforcement.