30 feared dead when bridge falls into Indian river

AP News
Posted: Oct 30, 2011 6:19 AM
30 feared dead when bridge falls into Indian river

Army divers joined police and paramilitary forces Sunday searching for victims who fell about 40 feet (12 meters) into a remote Indian river when a loaded foot bridge collapsed.

Townspeople had crowded onto the bridge to cross into a forest at dusk Saturday to hunt for a seasonal insect, a teri, which is eaten as a delicacy in the remote northeast area.

Two bodies have been recovered but 30 other people were feared drowned, mostly women and children, senior police officer Kyle Aya said.

The Kameng River is rocky with a swift current in the area, which was hindering the rescue effort.

About 30 people had been rescued soon after the bridge collapsed.

The bridge in the town of Seppa is 40 feet (12 meters) above the Kameng River, according to the Hindustan Times.

The region is in Arunachal Pradesh state and nearly 370 miles (500 kilometers) north of Gauhati, the capital of Assam state.

It was the second deadly footbridge collapse in India in a week. On Oct. 22, a wooden footbridge collapsed in the Darjeeling district of West Bengal state, leaving 31 people dead.