According to President Macky Sall, 39 people were killed and over 100 injured in the head-on collision of two buses overnight at an arterial road in Senegal’s central Kaffrine area.
The incident’s photos showed the bus’ front with a bloody seat, personal items, and a shoe lying around the tree-lined crash spot.
Experts say road accidents are quite common in Senegal. This is largely due to driver error, poor roads, and decrepit vehicles. However, the most recent disaster has resulted in one of the largest losses of life in recent years.
Sall spoke to reporters and corrected an earlier government statement, which had stated that the death toll was 40. He cited a miscount at a morgue.
After visiting the accident site on the No. He spoke with the injured at Kaffrine’s regional hospital after visiting the crash site, on the No. 1 national highway.
Sall stated, “We are deeply saddened by the loss of 39 victims in this accident close to Kaffrine”.
He said, “We have lost many youth people in this accident, and tomorrow the Prime minister will convene an Interministerial Council that will include the transport world — drivers, transporters, insurance companies, security services –to look at the steps to be taken.”
Three days of mourning will be observed by the government beginning Monday. Flags will be flown at half-mast in all parts of the country.
Kaffrine Mayor Abdoulaye Saydou Sow is also Minister of Urbanism. He stated in a statement, that the accident happened between 2:00 and 3:30 AM (GMT and local) Sunday. It was caused by a burst tire.
He stated that the Kaffrine morgue was now “saturated” with bodies being transported to Kaolack (a city located 40 miles (65km) away).
Cheikh Dieng, the public prosecutor, previously stated in a statement, that initial investigations had suggested that a public passenger bus experienced a burst tire and then veered off course.
He said that the bus crashed into another bus heading in the opposite direction.
Sow stated that he and other ministers visited Kaolack and Kaffrine to visit the wounded on Sunday.
He said that the delegation included Mansour Faye (Minister of Land Transport), Marie Kermesse Ngom (Health Minister) and Samba Ndiobeneka (Minister of Territorial Equity and National Solidarity).
Amadou Mame diop, president of the National Assembly, stated in a statement that he and all Members of Parliament shared the grief of the entire Senegalese population. He also praised “the quick response of emergency services”.
Ousmane sonko, an opposition politician, announced via Twitter that he would delay a scheduled fundraising event in light of the accident.
He said, “We bow before and offer our sincere condolences and sympathies to the family of the deceased and all Senegalese. We also pray for the mercy of their souls and a quick recovery for the hurt.”
The French ministry released a statement saying that Sunday’s French Minister of Foreign Affairs conveyed condolences to Senegalese counterpart.
At least 16 people were killed in a collision between a bus and a refrigerated truck in western Senegal on October 20, 2020.