VIZIANAGARAM: A private bus with 28 passengers on board went up in flames at Kiltampalem in S Kota Mandal of Vizianagaram district on Tuesday morning. All passengers are said to be safe.
The bus, bound for Araku in Visakhapatnam district, from Vizianagaram, caught fire when it reached Kiltampelem.
The passengers said that the bus developed frequent snags since the beginning of the journey. The engine turned off automatically when the bus reached Kiltampelem and repeated attempt of the driver Srinivas to switch it on yielded a little. Meanwhile, others on board saw thick smoke emanating from the air-conditioning units. They alerted the driver and got down. In minutes, the vehicle went into flames.
The bus hired by the group of tourists for a trip from Vizianagaram to Araku belonged to Vijaya Laxmi Travels.
The police and fire officials immediately rushed to the spot with fire tenders and doused the flames.
"We suspect that a power short-circuits might have caused the fire. A case has been registered and the investigation is on," said S Kota police officials.