x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Prisoners die in bus crash

Four men were being taken to the airport for deportation when the vehicle exploded and caught fire.

ABU DHABI // Four prisoners died after a bus taking them to the airport for deportation broke down and exploded on Thursday, police said. The bus driver and a prison guard tried to rescue the men, witnesses said, but could not reach them or extinguish the fire. The inmates, all from Asian countries, died of severe burns, officials said. The men were being driven from Al Sadr Prison to Abu Dhabi International Airport after finishing sentences for crimes that included theft, illegal residence and absconding, according to a statement from the Ministry of Interior.

The rear axle of the bus disengaged and hit the fuel tank, causing a massive explosion, reported WAM, the government news agency. The accident is under investigation. Lt Gen Saif Abdullah al Shafaar, the undersecretary of the Ministry of Interior, offered condolences to the prisoners' families. Their names and countries of origin have not yet been released. relass@thenational.ae