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Ecuador Bus Accident Kills at Least 35

Policemen and firefighters carryout the rescue work after a bus plunged into a ravine in San Isidro, southwest of Quito, Ecuador, 24 Dec 2010

At least 35 people were killed and more than 20 injured in an early morning accident Friday in Ecuador when a bus plunged into a ravine.

Authorities said the death toll could increase as six people were trapped under the wreckage. At least eight children were among those killed in the accident in Manabi province in southwestern Ecuador.

Investigators said the accident apparently was caused by a mechanical failure related to the bus's gear box. One Red Cross official said fog and rain may also have been factors in the accident.

Witnesses said there were more than 65 people on the bus, well above its normal capacity of 40.