NEW DELHI (AP) — A truck crowded with people returning from a party swerved off a mountain road into a gorge in northern India, killing 38 people and injuring 37 others.

Police and villagers helped pull out the injured and take them to hospitals after Tuesday's crash, and emergency workers used ropes and pulleys to retrieve the truck, said Roop Chand, a police officer in Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh state, on Wednesday.

Doctors have described the condition of at least eight people as critical, Chand said.

Mandi, in the Himalayan foothills, is about 250 miles (400 kilometers) north of New Delhi.

Public transport services are poor in many rural areas in India and people often use trucks to travel long distances.

More than 110,000 people die annually in road accidents in India, according to police figures. Badly maintained roads, overcrowding and aged vehicles cause the majority of the crashes.