Latin America & Caribbean

Haiti lorry crash kills at least 20 people

Haiti map

At least 20 people have died in Haiti after a large lorry overturned on a highway south of the capital, Port-au-Prince, officials said.

Some 40 others have been hospitalised with injuries, doctors said.

A local radio station said the nearby town of Petit-Goave was "overwhelmed" and underequipped to deal with them.

Road accidents are common in Haiti, where traffic regulations are rarely enforced and vehicles are often overloaded.

One witness told the AFP news agency that the road was known for being dangerous. At least four people were killed in an accident in the same area last week.

The lorry, which was carrying retail traders, many of them women, was said to have lost its balance as it climbed a steep incline, according to a local judge who witnessed the incident.

Joel Charles, hospital director in the town of Petit-Goave put the death toll at 27 and said 17 of the victims were found dead at the scene.

"Some of the injuries are critical, a lot of head trauma and broken bones. We need surgeons, other medical specialists and ambulances," Mr Charles said. "The victims need to be transported to hospitals in Port-au-Prince."

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