updated 8/5/2006 10:49:32 PM ET 2006-08-06T02:49:32

A bridge collapsed amid heavy rains in northwestern Pakistan on Saturday, killing at least 39 people, an official said.

About 200 people were standing on the bridge in Mardan, a small city about 30 miles west of Peshawar, when it suddenly collapsed, said Himayatullah Mayar, the district mayor.

The collapse dropped pedestrians and vehicles into a flooded stream.

Rescuers pulled 39 bodies from the rubble of the bridge and the floodwater, said Ibrahim Buland, a deputy mayor.

Dozens of people have died across Pakistan in recent weeks because of monsoon rains, landslides and flash floods. The rains have forced authorities to open the spillway to a major dam near Islamabad for the first time in five years.

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