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AP - Thursday, January 15, 1998; 5:32 p.m. EST
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- Rescuers pulled 32 dead bodies from the snow and were searching for more Thursday after an avalanche buried traffic on a mountain highway, Iranian media reported.
At least 80 people were injured in Tuesday's avalanche near Roudehen, 20 miles east of Tehran.
Relief teams uncovered a bus, two vans, a truck and three cars trapped under the snow, the head of the regional disaster headquarters, Rahnatollah Ahmadi, told the official Islamic Republic News Agency.
The snow swept about 35 cars into the neighboring valley, the Farsi-language newspaper Iran reported.
"Our bus came out of the tunnel and then suddenly we heard a horrible sound,'' survivor Hassan Eqtedaii told the newspaper. He said the bus then plunged 700 feet into the valley and broke in two.
"All the passengers were scattered in the snow. All I could hear was the sound of crying and shouting. Except for a few people like me, all the passengers were buried," Eqtedaii said.
More than 200 minor avalanches have occurred in the past week on the same mountain road that heads east from Tehran to Mashad.
Heavy snowfalls have cut off more than 150 villages in Iran's western province of Hamadan, the agency said.
Reuters - 15 January 1998; 03:04 GST, Dubai time (23:04 GMT)
TEHRAN, Iran (Reuters) - An avalanche has killed 22 people and injured 40 in a mountain road in northern Iran, the Iranian news agency IRNA said on Wednesday.
It said a bus and two other vehicles were buried on Tuesday night by the avalanche, one of about 200 which hit the area and blocked the road connecting Tehran to the Caspian coast.
Some of the heaviest snowfalls in the past 10 years have cut off more than 1,000 villages in western and northern Iran.