Rustenburg - A private bus transporting 20 learners exploded and caught fire in Mmabatho near Mahikeng, the North West department of education said on Monday.
The bus was transporting Letsatsing Secondary School learners returning from winter camp when it exploded on Saturday. No injuries were reported.
Departmental spokesperson Elias Malindi said the learners attended winter camp classes at Mosikare Secondary School in Mantsha village.
“On their way back home as the bus was dropping off learners around Mmabatho Township it exploded,” he said.
North West Education MEC Mmaphefo Matsemela was happy that there were no injuries reported from the incident.
“On behalf of the North West department of education l am truly grateful that there were no injuries reported. The purpose of this winter camps is to primarily improve the performance of our learners,” she said.
“We wish to call upon all our bus operators to be extremely vigilant whenever they are transporting learners. They should ensure that their buses are roadworthy and they comply to the rules of the road.”
The department arranged counselling for all the affected learners.
In June two Grade R learners died and eight others were injured when their minibus taxi lost control on top of the bridge as they were crossing the Bloemhof Dam.
The minibus taxi was transporting 26 learners from Hoopstad in the Free State province to Bloemhof Primary School in North West.
It lost control on top of the bridge and hit the embankment.
The North West department of community safety and transport management at the time said the taxi was providing non-contracted services which was an arrangement between the owner and parents to transport learners to school, and was not part of the government learner transport service.