India road crash kills 27 near Mumbai

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Media captionFootage showed the bus at the bottom of the gorge

A bus has plunged down a deep gorge in the western Indian state of Maharashtra killing at least 27 people, police say.

Reports said the driver lost control of the bus after it collided with a truck near Malshej Ghat, a tourist area about 160km (99 miles) from Mumbai.

A senior police officer said the bus was carrying 40 people and rescue work had begun, Associated Press reported.

Road accidents are common in India, often due to poor driving or badly maintained roads and vehicles.

Every year, tens of thousands of people are killed on the country's roads and the numbers have been rising steadily - nearly 140,000 people were killed in 2012, according to the government's National Crime Records Bureau.

In October, at least 20 pilgrims were killed and 35 others injured when a lorry carrying them crashed into a gorge in the northern state of Punjab.

The same month, at least 30 people, including 12 children, died in a collision between a cargo lorry and two minibuses filled with labourers in the north-eastern state of Assam.

And last May, 39 people died and 14 others were injured when a bus skidded off the road into a fast-flowing river in the northern state of Himachal Pradesh.

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