At least 18 people have burned to death when an overnight bus smashed into another vehicle carrying diesel in eastern Pakistan, according to officials.
The accident took place on a motorway at around 2330 GMT (4:30 am local time) on Sunday near the town of Pindi Bhattian in eastern Punjab province where a bus carrying 33 passengers collided with another vehicle.
"Within five minutes, the whole bus was engulfed in flames. Eighteen people burned alive whereas 16 others were injured, of whom four are critical," senior police officer Fahad Ahmed told AFP on the phone.
"It seems that the driver of the bus dozed off."
The Suzuki open-back van was carrying drums of diesel and petrol.
Lax safety measures
Fatal road accidents are common in Pakistan, where traffic rules are rarely followed and roads in many rural areas are in poor condition.
Ramshackle highways, lax safety measures and reckless driving contribute to Pakistan's dire road safety record.
Passenger buses are frequently crammed to capacity and seatbelts are not commonly worn, meaning high death tolls from single vehicle accidents are common.
In January, at least 40 people died when a bus plunged off a bridge in southwestern Pakistan and burst into flames.