Children, baby among 13 dead in bus fire

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Padang, Indonesia -

A bus fire on Indonesia's Sumatra island killed 13 people early Tuesday including four children and a baby, police said, with survivors forced to smash locked windows to escape the blaze.

“Thirteen of the 45 passengers died, trapped on the bus after a fire broke out. The driver wasn't able to extinguish the fire and it began to spread,” West Sumatra police spokesman Mainar Sugianto told AFP.

“The fire broke out in the front of the bus and no one could get out from the back door because it was blocked with boxes and bags of goods,” Fikri, a survivor, told Elshinta radio.

“The windows were also locked, so we had to smash them to get out,” he said.

Sugianto said among the 13 victims were four children and a baby, and another four people were being treated for burns and injuries.

The driver was fine, he said.

The bus left the town of Dumai at around 8:00 pm (1300 GMT) Monday night and the fire broke out at 4:30 am in the town of Limapuluh, police said. It was bound for the mountainous town of Bukittinggi.

Local officials said the fire was likely caused by a short circuit. - Sapa-AFP

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