Mexican tourist bus plunges off cliff, killing 60

A bus carrying Mexican tourists plunged off a 650-foot cliff Monday, killing at least 60 people in a crash police said could have been caused by brake failure on the steep mountainous roads.

Three people were injured in the crash that came as the bus traveled from western city of Guadalajara to the Gulf coast state of Tabasco following Easter week. The number of dead could rise.

Police did not immediately know what caused the wreck, but were investigating whether the driver was going too fast or whether the bus' brakes failed as it was descending one of the many winding roads in the area, said Ranulfo Marquez Hernandez, deputy secretary of civil protection for Veracruz state, where the crash occurred.

Federal Preventive Police official Arturo Corona told W Radio that the bus was traveling about 110 to 115 kilometers (68 mph to 70 mph). Buses often are required to operate at speeds as low as 95 kilometers (60 miles) per hour. He said a preliminary investigation indicated that the bus's higher-than-normal speed may have been caused by brake failure.

Two of the injured passengers were taken unconscious to area hospitals. The condition of the third, an 8-year-old girl, was not immediately known.

Hundreds of thousands of Mexicans filled the highways Sunday and Monday as they returned from Easter week vacations. The holiday typically sees a large number of highway deaths.

The highway where the bus was traveling is considered to be one of the 15 most dangerous in the country, Corona said, reports AP.

O.Ch.