At least 18 people died on Sunday night in a grisly road accident that involved two vehicles at Nsalala village in Shinyanga region’s Tinde Ward.
Shinyanga Regional Police Commander (RPC) Muliro Jumanne Muliro confirmed the incident, which he blamed on reckless driving.
He said the 19:30 hour accident on the Tinde-Nzega road occurred due to an attempt by the driver of the Hiace to carelessly overtake a car before colliding with a semitrailer, which was heading to Nzega from Tinde.
RPC Muliro identified the driver as 32-year old Seif Mohammed who was driving the Noah with registration number T232 BQR, the property of Mwinyi Hamis, a resident of Tinde.
The driver collided head-on with a big semitrailer, with registration number T198 CDQ, whose trailer, bearing registration numbers T283 CBG, was driven by 46-year old Aloyce Kavishe of Dar es salaam.
Commander Muliro said 15 people died on the spot while three others succumbed to accident injuries as they were receiving treatments at Shinyanga Referral hospital.
The deceased include seven male and 11 female and two children, with nine of the dead already identified. RPC Muliro said that police have arrested the two drivers for more investigation.
The deceased have been identified as Daud Maja (34) of Kishapu, Emmanuel Jumanne and Maganga Lubala of Uyui in Tabora, Dinna Masanja (20), Chausiku Kasapa (42), Specioza Dotto (23), Esther Kasapa (59) and Andrea Mambosasa (33), all Tinde residents.
The Hiace conductor, Vicent Nzamala (23), also died in the accident. “Should drivers follow traffic signs, many accidents can be avoided because even in the area where this accident occurred, there were signs for low speed, which the drivers defied,” said RPC Muliro.
The Shinyanga Assistant Regional Medical Officer (RMO), Dr Maguja Daniel confirmed receipt of the accident victims at around 9pm, saying three victims were still hospitalised and their conditions were improving.
He mentioned the casualties as Boniphace Richard of Nzega, two children Hamis Ali (5) and Salima Kiza (1) whose mother Deborah Maingu of Samuyi in Shinyanga District died in the accident.
Dr Daniel explained that five bodies of deceased have been identified and taken from hospital and 13 bodies are still at the hospital morgue.