NEW DELHI, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- At least 10 people were killed and five others injured when a passenger van collided with a stationary truck in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, police said Thursday.
The accident occurred on a national highway at Thuvarankurichi near Trichy district, more than 300 km from state capital Chennai.
"The van carrying 15 people rammed into the truck which was parked on one side of the road. The impact of the collision was such that nine people, including three children and two women, died on the spot," a senior police official said.
Those injured have been admitted to the state-run district hospital in Trichy where one succumbed to his injuries later in the day, he said. "The condition of one more passenger is said to be critical and he is battling for his life in the hospital."
The victims were going to the temple town of Tirupati from Kanyakumari, the southernmost tip of the country, when the accident happened.
Preliminary probe by police has revealed that the driver of the van had failed to spot the stationary truck as he was probably busy listening to songs using a head phone, which led to the accident. "However, a thorough investigation has been ordered into the incident," he said.
"The driver of the truck has fled the spot after the accident and we will book him for negligence as he had parked his vehicle without switching on the parking lights that would have alerted drivers of other vehicles on the highway," the official added.
India has the highest number of road fatalities in the world. Road accidents occur mostly due to poor driving or badly maintained roads and vehicles.