At least 33 killed as crowded bus veers off Nepal mountain highway

An overcrowded bus veered off a mountain highway in Nepal on Monday, killing at least 33 people and injuring 28 others in one of the country's deadliest bus crashes in recent years.

Injured people were brought by helicopter to Kathmandu and were being treated in two hospitals, Home Ministry official Chiranjivi Nepal said.

The bus, which was carrying local passengers to the capital, veered off Arniko highway and rolled about 500 feet. Parts of the bus, bodies and luggage were scattered on the forested slopes below the highway.

Army and police rescuers were combing the slopes near Deurali village, 50 miles east of the capital.

Police were still trying to determine the cause of the crash. The highway is wide enough for two vehicles to pass but has sharp turns and no guard rails.

Nepal's mountainous terrain, extreme weather and poorly maintained roads and vehicles often make for treacherous travel conditions. Much of the bus crashes in the country happen during the rainy monsoon season that begins in June and ends in September.