LA PAZ – The death toll from a road accident in the central Bolivian province of Cochabamba has risen from 12 to 16, a police spokesman said Saturday.
Eight others were injured in the accident near the town of Challa Grande, 109 kilometers (68 miles) from Cochabamba city, the provincial capital, Traffic Police director Col. Julio Cruz told reporters.
Initial reports said the accident involved a head-on collision between a bus and truck, but Cruz said the truck overturned while trying to pass another vehicle, causing 14 people riding in the back to be ejected.
An approaching bus was then unable to stop in time and collided with the people strewn on the road before crashing into an embankment.
Three children aged 2-6 and the bus driver’s assistant were among those killed in the accident, the deadliest in the Andean nation in the past three days.
The truck driver was arrested and will be investigated for reckless operation of a motor vehicle.
Road accidents in Bolivia result in an average of 1,000 deaths and 40,000 injuries annually, according to official figures.