An army bus has crashed into a truck in the Nile Delta province of Beheira, killing 16 Egyptian soldiers, a security official said.

Forty others were injured in the Sunday morning accident, the official said.

The accident took place on the highway between Cairo and the port city of Alexandria as the soldiers were heading home from their military base in northwestern Egypt for a vacation during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, the source said.

Road accidents are common in Egypt due to badly maintained roads and poor enforcement of traffic laws.

Egyptians have long complained that the government has failed to deal with chronic transport problems, with both roads and train lines poorly maintained.

According to a 2012 World Health Organisation report, road accidents kill about 12,000 people each year in the country with a population of about 90 million.

Source: Agencies