Amaravati: In a freak accident, 14 persons were killed and 15 injured when a speeding lorry ploughed into a crowd and also knocked down a high tension power cable pole, leading to electrocution of several of them in Chittoor district in Andhra Pradesh Friday.
The accident occurred outside a police station at Yerpedu, about 30 km from here in Chittoor, where a group of 40 people from Munagala Palem village had assembled to lodge a complaint on illegal sand mining on the Swarnamukhi riverbed, the police said.
Eleven persons, including four women, died on the spot while three succumbed at the SVRR Government Hospital. The condition of six of the injured was stated to be critical, the hospital sources said.
The injured, who included three local journalists covering the villagers' visit to the police station, were later shifted to the TTD-run Sri Venkateswara Institute of Medical Sciences here.
The eyewitnesses said the lorry first ran over the crowd and then hit the electric pole, resulting in the overhead high-tension cable snapping and falling on the people.
Some two-wheelers parked at the spot also caught fire after coming into contact with the live wire.
It was not clear as to how many persons were run over and how many of them were electrocuted or died of burns suffered in the fire, though eyewitnesses said at least four persons were run over by the lorry.
At least four of the bodies were charred beyond recognition, the police said.
Chief minister N. Chanrababu Naidu expressed deep shock over the mishap and ordered the district administration to render full assistance to the victims.