Eight persons, including three women and a child, were charred to death and 12 injured after a private bus and an aviation fuel-laden truck collided and went up in flames near Erode early on Sunday.
A 50-year-old private lodge owner, who was admitted to a private hospital in Coimbatore, 100 km from Erode, with 90% burns, succumbed in the evening, hospital sources said, adding, his condition was very critical when he was brought, they said.
The Coimbatore-bound bus from Bangalore, carrying 32 passengers, rammed into the fuel laden truck from behind at Chithode, about 15 km from Erode on NH-47, triggering a blaze which gutted both vehicles, police said.
Five persons, including three women and a child, were charred to death on the spot, while two others admitted in a critical state to hospitals in Erode district succumbed to injuries.
Another person, a 26-year-old software engineer from Bangalore, with 25% burns, is undergoing treatment at the Coimbatore hospital, sources said.
Police at Erode said eight persons who suffered minor injuries were discharged after treatment. Some more were later discharged.
The driver of the bus was among the deceased, police said, adding the truck was on its way to Coimbatore airport carrying the aviation fuel.