Fixed-Route Taxi Kills Student in Sofia, Accident Unreported

Crime | February 18, 2012, Saturday // 11:30|  views

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A traffic accident in which a 22-year-old student got ran over and killed by a fixed-route taxi in Sofia's Studentski grad (Student city) remained unreported by the Interior Ministry.

According to a reportage aired by private TV station bTV late on Friday, the accident happened on February 14.

Mariana Kabuleva, 22, and a group of friends had headed for a bar to celebrate St. Valentine's Day, bTV announced.

The students had had to walk on the road because the sidewalk had not been cleared of snow, the reporter stated, adding that they had observed road safety rules and had walked against the traffic.

A bus and a fixed-route taxi  #18 had been travelling in the opposite lane, when the taxi decided to pull ahead of the bus.

The stretch of the road was poor-lit and as the taxi was trying to go past the bus, it hit the girl in the back and she died on the spot.

The fixed-route taxi had been travelling from the village of Katina to the Druzhba-1 residential district in Sofia, but there were no passengers on board at the time of the crash.

The driver, Dimitar Dimitrov, 62, told the police he had failed to see the group of students.

"When he saw the pedestrians, it was already too late, as the section of the road was ill-lit. He said that he had been driving at a low speed. He had not been drinking; he was tested for alcohol on the spot. A check showed that he had not committed a violation of the Road Traffic Act since 2005," said Yoana Trendafilova, investigating police officer at the Sofia District Police Directorate.

Overtaking is banned on the road section where the traffic accident occurred.

An expert analysis is yet to determine if Dimitrov had exceeded the speed limit.

The driver of the fixed-route taxi had been arrested.

Mariana was buried on Friday in the northern city of Pleven.

Asked to comment on the matter, Neli Ivanova, spokesperson of the Sofia District Police Directorate, denied that the case had been hushed up, adding that the pre-trial proceedings were underway and that a local newspaper had published an article on the accident in its Thursday issue.

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Tags: fixed-route taxi, student city, Studentski Grad, sofia, Road Traffic Act, traffic accident, student, Pleven, sofia district police directorate, interior ministry


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