17 people have perished in a fatal road accident which occurred in the early hours of today involving an Isuzu-light-truck with registration number is ACK 5871 in Mpulungu District ,in Northern Province.
Of the deceased, 12 are males, four are females and a child respectively.
The victims were among the 61 passengers on board the vehicle , which was heading to Mpulungu District from Senga District.
However, about 15 kilometers before their destination, the driver failed to negotiate a curve near Kasimango village along the Mpulungu-Mbala road forcing the vehicle to flip on one side.
ZANIS reports that Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA) Northern Province Manager Chileshe Chileshe confirmed the development in Mpulungu today.
He said the 42 other passengers on the truck sustained serious injuries and have been rushed to Mpulungu District Hospital as well as Mbala General Hospital for medical treatment.
Three others , however , escaped unhurt from the road accident.
Mr. Chileshe identified the accident victims as members of the catholic church under Mambwe Mission who were coming from Senga District heading to Mpulungu for a church programme before they met their fate.
And Mr. Chileshe says preliminary investigations by RTSA have revealed that the driver of the Isuzu-light-truck, was over- speeding at the time of the accident.
He also disclosed that the fateful vehicle was not road worth as it had a compromised suspension and finished tyres.
Mr. Chileshe said the driver the truck whom he identified as Light Silwamba, 28, has been apprehended to help with investigations and will be charged with causing death by dangerous driving.
Meanwhile, Mpulungu District Commissioner Dennis Sikazwe has described the road accident, which has so far killed 17 people, as a tragic.
He appealed for urgent support from government and well-wishers on behalf of the injured persons and bereaved families respectively.
The latest road accident in Mpulungu District follows a similar accident in Mungwi District which left several members of the Catholic Church in Kasama dead after a truck they were in also lost control and over-turned earlier this month.