A 13-year-old girl was killed in the capital’s suburb Hulhumalé on Tuesday night after a bus collided with a motorcycle on the road that leads to the airport highway and bridge to Malé.
Fathmath Anjum Shafeeq, from Thulusdhoo island in Kaafu atoll, was a seventh-grade student at the Jamaluddin School in Malé. She was pronounced dead on arrival at the Tree Top Hospital in Hulhumalé. Her mother, who had been driving the motorcycle, was taken to the Hulhumalé hospital. She did not sustain serious injuries.
Eyewitnesses told the media that the bus operated by the state-owned Maldives Transport and Contracting Company hit the motorcycle from behind. The girl flew off and hit her head on the ground. Her helmet was smashed by the force of impact, according to eyewitnesses.
The bus continued on its way after the collision and was stopped near the bridge u-turn, police said. The 54-year-old male driver was arrested and an investigation is underway.
The driver, conductor and 14 passengers were unaware of the collision, an MTCC official told Mihaaru. There were no signs of an impact on the bus and its speed would not have exceeded 53mph, the official told the newspaper.
In the wake of the tragic accident, police urged the public to only use safe helmets allowed by traffic regulations.
Anjum was buried in Hulhumalé afternoon prayers. According to media reports, she was an only child and a proficient Quran student. The accident occurred while the mother and daughter were on their way back to Malé after visiting a relative.
In May, a Ukranian tourist was killed in Hulhumalé after an MTCC bus driver fell asleep on the wheel. At the time, MTCC denied that bus drivers were overworked. “Out of an eight-hour duty [shift], drivers have to drive for four hours. They have to be on standby for the other four hours,” MTCC CEO Hassan Shah told the press at the time.
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Source URL: Maldives Independent