A Jaguar Bus Registration Number UAT 701C from Kampala enroute to Kisoro caught fire at about 7 on Monday morning.
Police says the accident happened at Nyakabande Airstrip in Kisoro Municipality, just 2 kilometers from the town centre. There were no injuries reported from the bus after all passengers had been accounted for.
Merchandise and other belongings of the travelers were all destroyed.
Mr Charles Patrick Okoto, the Kisoro district police commander, says their rescue team was unable to salvage luggage on the ill-fated bus.
Police says the fire could have been triggered off by a tyre bust and brake problems.
“The cause of the fire is that one of the behind tyres of the bus burst and later caused friction that resulted in flames that burnt all the passenger seats,” Mr Charles Patrick Okoto said.
Thick black plumes of smoke billowed from the 69-seater bus to the horror and consternation of survivors and onlookers.
A survivor says one of the rear tyres of the bus burst and the replacement too burst, but the driver powered on since he was close to the destination.
The flapping tyre strips heated up in the friction against the bitumen surface, generating smoke and eventually fire that consumed the entire bus, another passenger says asking not to be named.
Many travellers jumped out to safety through the window.
Police are investigating whether there was negligence that risked passengers’ lives and led to destruction of property. The charred frame of the bus is yet to be towed to the police station as inquiries continue.
Hajji Shafique Ssekandi, the Kisoro resident district commissioner, asked management of the bus company to immediately provide alternative means of transport for stranded passengers.