The bomb was on a timber truck that overturned late Wednesday on the main road from Logar to Kabul. As workers tried to clear the roadway hours later on Thursday morning, terrorists detonated the explosives from afar.
Logar police say the truck fell into a stream between two schools. Attiqullah Lodin, the governor of the province, says the children had gathered around the truck and were killed when the blast erupted, reportes the New York Times.
"Sixteen schoolchildren aged 8 to 12 were killed along with policemen and other civilians, " said Lodin.
Two shops that were close to the explosion were also destroyed and rescue teams were working to find victims trapped under the rubble. Lodin warned the number of civilians killed could rise.
Western officials in Kabul had been picking up increased chatter about a plot to detonate a truck bomb in the region before presidential elections in August, reported the Times Online. Some officials believe the truck bomb was headed to a high profile target such as a government building or foreign embassy.
The massive blast sent pieces of the truck flying more than a mile through the Mohammad Agha district, an area close to shops and milk farmers.
Only a huge crater remained where the truck once stood, and after the blast, people rushed to gather the dead and wrap them in white and colored shrouds. Nearby mud houses had collapsed and the twisted and charred remnants of police vehicles were loaded onto a truck.
A local police officer, Lal Mohammad, was working on his land more than 100 yards away when the bomb exploded. He ran toward the blast zone and discovered the gruesome devastation.
"I collected five bodies myself and then picked up the body parts," Mohammad said.
Roadside and suicide bombings have increased this year as thousands of additional American troops joined the fight in Afghanistan. The majority of victims have been civilians.