The bus veered off a bridge Credit: AP

At least 24 people have been killed after a bus veered off a bridge and plunged into a river valley.

It’s feared the vehicle’s brakes failed – causing it to plummet 40 metres into the steep ditch on Sunday evening in central Kenya.

The bus – belonging to Modern Coast company – was travelling from Meru to the port city of Mombasa when it veered off the Nithi Bridge, the Daily Nation and Standard newspapers report.

County Commissioner Nobert Komora said: “We are sadly announcing to the nation we have lost 24 people in a grisly Modern Coast Bus accident on the notorious Nithi River Bridge along the Meru – Nairobi highway.”

Nation reported Komora as saying that initial investigations showed the bus’s brakes may have failed.

It’s understood the fault may have stopped the driver from properly turning on a sharp bend at the bridge.