Arusha. Grief and panic gripped Karatu township and Arusha this morning following a horrific road accident which killed more than 30 school kids and their teachers at Rhotia area near Karatu town.
The grisly accident occurred at around 9am Saturday, according to reports reaching The Citizen from the crash area - nearly 150 kilometres from Arusha town.
"Many, many school children have been killed. I can't confirm the exact figure now," the Karatu District Commissioner Theresia Mahongo told The Citizen on phone shortly ago.
She said she had been in Arusha on official duties but was rushing to the area after receiving news of the tragedy.
Neither could the Regional Commissioner Mrisho Gambo nor the Regional Police Commander, Charles Mkumbo be reached on phone.
Reports from eye witnesses and education officials in Karatu said out of those who died, 28 were school children and three were adults - probably their teachers.
The deceased hailed from Lucky Vincent English-Medium School located at Kwa Mrombo south west of Arusha city and were travelling to Karatu to do a joint examination with a partner school in Karatu, Karatu.
Reports had it that the bus skidded off the road and plunged into a river at Marera in Rhotia area, a few kilometres before Karatu town along the Arusha road.