12 police conscripts, 6 civilians killed in Sinai road collision
A man looks at the wreckage of a school bus which crashed with a train northeast of Cairo March 6, 2015. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

CAIRO: A total of 12 police conscripts and six civilians have been killed in a road accident in Egypt’s North Sinai late Wednesday, The Interior Ministry announced.

In a statement published on its official Facebook page, the ministry said the accident occurred when a truck collided with a bus carrying the victims in Abu-Redes City, 120 kilometers from Tor Sinai. The bus was heading to the Red Sea resort city of Sharm al Sheikh.

The 12 conscripts were from Dahab Police Station while the other six who died in the crash were four students, and two unidentified individuals, according to the statement.

The collision also left two civilians wounded. They were immediately transferred to the Al Tor hospital, said the statement.

An investigation is underway and police are currently holding the driver of the vehicle in custody until they question the injured.

Thousands of Egyptians die every year in traffic crashes. Due to its high mortality rate on the road, Egypt is one of 10 states enrolled in the UN Decade of Action program that aims to halve the deaths of road accidents by 2020.

According to a report issued by the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) in April 2015, an average of 17 people died per day in road accidents in Egypt in 2014.

Official figures spotted a 7.5 percent decline in accidents rate in 2014 with a total of 14,403 road in comparison to 2013 (15,578 accidents,) according to the report.

It added that human error caused 59.2 percent of all 2014 road accidents, while 19.3 percent were caused by technical failure.

Egypt has recently been escalating measures to monitor road safety, through applying random drug-tests to drivers, checking car and driver’s licenses, building new roads and renewing old ones as part of a national road project.

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