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At least twelve children dead after northwestern India bus crash

Children perish after their bus collides head-on with a truck in Punjab state, while police launch investigation into the incident.

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Indian children study inside a bus converted to a school called the "School on Wheels" at a slum in Hyderabad on September 13, 2011. (NOAH SEELAM/AFP/Getty Images)

A school bus crashed head-on into a truck in Jalandhar in India's Punjab state early on March 4, killing at least 12 children and injuring numerous others.

According to CNN, the wreck killed seven children on the spot, while four others eventually died of their injuries after being transported to a hospital.

Read more from GlobalPost: Video: On Location: Delhi's Killer Roads

Around thirty children were on the bus, wrote AFP, while the driver was also killed in the 8:00 AM incident, according to a local official.

The impact of the crash was such that the roof of the minibus was entirely torn off, wrote Sky News, while the vehicle was "virtually reduced to a heap of metal."

Police have launched an investigation into the incident, which highlights the dismal state of Indian road safety, wrote AFP.

India has one of the highest rates of traffic deaths and incidents on the planet with over 130,000 deaths annually, and authorities tend to blame drunk driving for the dismal figures, according to Deutsche Welle.

According to the Times of India, the figures translate into 17 traffic deaths an hour in India, calling the figure "a matter of national shame."

Here's a somewhat classic look at Indian driving:

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/india/130304/at-least-twelve-children-dead-after-northwestern-ind