Three persons were killed on the spot when a Maruti car in which they were travelling collided with a Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) superfast bus on M.C. Road near Kottarakara in Kollam district on Saturday morning.

The accident occurred at Edakkad Junction at 7.30 a.m. when the bus was overtaking another KSRTC bus.

Those killed were teachers attached to the Pangode Kendriya Vidayalaya (KV) in Thiruvananthapuram. They were identified as N.C. Krishnan residing at Poojapura, Parameshwaran Chettiyar residing at Thirumala, and former Principal of the school K.C. Mathew residing at Muttada.

A fourth person in the car, identified as Harikrishnan residing at Kowdiar, also a teacher at the same school, was critically injured and admitted to a private medical college hospital at Venjarumoodu. All the four were on their way to Ettumannur to attend a funeral. Krishnan was at the wheel at the time of the accident.

Eyewitnesses said the car got badly mangled in the impact of the accident. The bus crashed into a closed bunk before coming to a halt. None of those in the bus was injured. The bus was going to Kanyakumari. The Kottarakara police had registered a case and took the bus driver into custody.

It took almost an hour for the police, personnel from the Fire and Rescue Services and local people to cut open the car and retrieve the four trapped inside. Forest Minister Benoy Viswom who happened to pass that way at that time lent a helping hand. Traffic through M.C. Road along the Edakkad-Vayakal course got held up for more than an hour on account of the accident. The police said that mobile phones found in the car helped them identify the victims.