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50 DIE, 11 HURT WHEN BUS TUMBLES 90 FEET IN PERU

A bus tumbled 90 feet down an embankment and landed upside down in a river in the Andes mountains Friday, killing at least 50 people and injuring about 11, police said.

Authorities said the 52-seat bus, overloaded with extra passengers picked up along the way, had left Lima on a route taking it through winding mountain roads to the city of Huancayo, 140 miles east.Officials with the Republican Guard, the police unit sent to the disaster site, said that only passengers crammed into the aisle were known to have survived.

Passenger Nelly Suarez said the accident occurred when the driver slammed on his brakes to avoid a pile of construction material blocking a bridge over the Mantaro River.

The bus never made it to the bridge, falling off the embankment and landing upside down in the water.

Suarez escaped with minor injuries, but her husband and 9-month-old baby were killed. The family got on the bus just outside Lima and had to stand in the aisle.