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Police revise casualty count in Skyway crash to 18 killed, 16 hurt

At least 18 people were confirmed killed after a bus fell off Skyway in Taguig City before dawn Monday supposedly due to a sleepy driver who was speeding, the the police Highway Patrol Group said.
Earlier, Police Superintendent Elizabeth Velasquez, spokesperson for the HPG, said 21 were confirmed killed and 20 were hurt as a Don Mariano Transit bus fell off the southbound lane of Skyway and crashed onto a van below.
Velasquez then told GMA News Online over the phone that HPG has revised the casualty count to 18 killed and 16 injured. 
She added all fatalities were from the ill-fated bus while the driver of the van the bus landed on and his companion were hurt.
"Na-rectify (na namin), siguro nagkaroon lang ng kaunting pagkakamali sa pagbilang sa mga hospital na pinuntahan," Velasquez said in explaining the error.
The Highway Patrol Group official added witnesses saw the driver was sleepy as the accident happened early Monday. 
She added that another bus driver said the ill-fated bus swerved towards them at 100 to 110 kilometers per hour before falling off the Skyway.
"Accordingly, napaidlip ata ng kaunti 'yung driver. Madaling araw 'yun eh. It could be human error, pero hindi pa natin sinasantabi 'yung mechanical defect," Velasquez said.
"According (naman) sa isang nakasabay niya sa Skyway, 80 kph lang daw ang takbo pero n'ung nag-overtake, 100 to 110 more na ang takbo," she added.
She noted that these are merely possible causes of the accident according to witnesses.
A report by GMA News' Mark Salazar on GMA News TV's "Balitanghali" said the driver of the Don Mariano bus was alive but in critical condition, according to the Parañaque Doctor's Hospital. He had earlier been reported among the fatalities.
TV footage showed a number of bodies strewn around the wreckage of the bus with police officers milling around. The van was an unrecognizable pile of smashed white metal, Associated Press reported.
The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) suspended the entire 78-unit fleet of Don Mariano Transit Corp. hours after the accident.
Monday's incident was not the first time a vehicle fell off the Skyway.
A report on GMA News TV's "News To Go" on Monday said three people were killed when a passenger bus plunged into the Sucat West Service Road in Parañaque in July 2011, while a passenger of a jeepney died when an SUV fell on top of it in October 2006.
Meanwhile, a spate of bus accidents happened across the country in the past two months.
In November, a passenger bus crashed into a motorcycle in Quezon province. The motorcycle then exploded and set the bus on fire.

In Camarines Sur, a Manila-bound bus collided with one headed for Bicol, killing six and leaving 8 passengers in critical condition.

On Sunday, a head-on collision between two buses in Olongapo City left at least 50 people hurt. — Marc Jayson Cayabyab with a report from the Associated Press/JDS, GMA News