Five people died  on the spot and 17 others injured when a Mutare bound Inter Africa bus rammed into a tree at Shamhu area in Nyazura early this morning.

The bus was coming from Bulawayo.

The 17 people injured were ferried to Mutare Provincial Hospital and three of them are in a critical condition.

The bus driver allegedly fell asleep and lost control of the bus before it rammed into a tree, killing five passengers on the spot.

Survivors of the accident said the driver started to sleep all the way from Murambinda and an attempt to take a brief nap at Nyazura did not materialise.

Meanwhile, the Minister of State for Manicaland Provincial Affairs, Cde Mandi Chimene has visited the injured at Mutare Provincial Hospital and has consoled the five bereaved families.

She urged long distance bus operators to value human life and put in place mechanisms of two drivers per bus to avoid unnecessary loss of human lives as a result of fatigue.

Road traffic accidents have claimed many lives and many of the carnages are caused by human error, speeding, negligent driving, driving under the influence of alcohol, driving unroadworthy vehicles, among many others.

Despite numerous traffic awareness campaigns, the country continues to lose precious human lives on the roads.