MANILA, Philippines (AP) — A truck carrying more than two dozen villagers, mostly ecstatic grade schoolers on their way to a school festival, lost control Friday on a downhill road and flipped on its side, leaving eight students and an adult dead in the central Philippines, police said.

Police investigator Nelson Saquibal said 16 others, including the driver, were brought to a hospital after the accident in Boljoon town in Cebu province. The students from two village schools were on their way to attend a cultural, health and sports festival in the town center, he said.

Saquibal told The Associated Press by telephone that some of the students were pinned under the truck while others were tossed off the vehicle by the impact and retrieved by residents, police and firefighters. He asked for prayers for the injured and the children who perished.

Deadly road accidents are common in the Philippines because of weak enforcement of traffic laws, rickety vehicles and inadequate road safety railings and signs especially in the countryside.