Fortunately, no one died in the horrific accident, but scores of injured passengers were transported to nearby hospitals.
Grahamstown police spokeswoman Mali Govender yesterday said the accident happened at about 3.30pm, just 15km outside Grahamstown.
She said the bus veered off the road, overturned and ended up on its side next to the road.
The driver apparently lost control of the bus when he was negotiating a sharp curve.
Eastern Cape department of health spokesman Sizwe Kupelo yesterday confirmed that some passengers sustained severe injuries.
“Ten of the passengers were in a critical condition with fractured ribs, pelvis and spine injuries. Forty-eight passengers were taken to Settlers Hospital in Grahamstown, while four of the critically injured were later transferred to Livingstone Hospital in Port Elizabeth,” said Kupelo.
Transport spokeswoman Khuselwa Rantjie said the accident may have occurred due to a mechanical failure. The owners of the bus are unknown as yet.
“The report from our traffic officers indicates that the brakes failed as the driver was negotiating a turn,” she said.
It is understood the bus was transporting congregants from the Old Apostolic Church of Southern Africa from Port Elizabeth to Alice to attend a church service. Attempts to get a comment from the church proved fruitless at the time of writing yesterday.
By Sisipho Zamxaka – DispatchLIVE