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19 children and two adults killed in South Africa after truck collides with car carrying students

Nineteen children and two adults were killed in South Africa following a truck collided head-on with a pickup carrying students from local schools Friday, based on the KwaZulu-Natal Transport Department.

The accident occurred in Pongola in eastern South Africa on national route N2 following a truck driver sped and overtook another vehicle on a double barrier line, “clearly violating all possible traffic regulations,” the department said on Facebook, describing circulating video of the incident.

The truck collided head-on with a Toyota Hilux pickup, killing 19 students from four local schools and two adults, like the driver, officials said. It really is unclear just how many individuals were in the automobile and whether there have been any survivors.

The students were ages 5 to 12, in accordance with news24, an area online news website.

The truck driver, who initially fled, turned himself directly into authorities Saturday after police launched a manhunt. He’ll come in Pongola Magistrate Court on Monday and faces charges of culpable homicide and negligent driving, the Transport Department said.

“We extend our deepest condolences, to the groups of the deceased,” Sipho Hlomuka, an associate of the executive council for transport community safety and liaison, said in a statement. “We have been deeply disturbed by this fatal accident. The death of so many young lives is too painful.”

Angry community members torched a truck and threw stones at other vehicles on the N2 route Friday, the Transport Department said.

“The authorities and members of the South African Defense Force are monitoring the problem in your community,” the department said on Facebook.

A KwaZulu-Natal government delegation is likely to visit the groups of the victims and the four affected schools, along with attend the truck driver’s court proceedings Monday. The delegation includes representatives from the national Transport Department, the provincial government, the street Accident Fund, the street Traffic Management Corp., South African Police Services and the street Traffic Inspectorate.

Mirna Alsharif is really a breaking news reporter for NBC News.

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