BEIJING, China - An overloaded school minibus has crashed head-on with a truck in rural western China, killing at least 18 kindergarten pupils on their way to school.
1 minibus, 62 kids - 18 dead
The minibus, designed for nine adult passengers, was apparently packed with 62 children and two adults – the driver and a teacher who were also killed.
News of the crash ignited public anger across China, highlighting an under-funded education system that especially short-changes students in remote areas.
Authorities blamed the overloading for the accident, the official Xinhua News Agency said.
Four children and the bus driver died at the scene, according to a spokesperson. Gao Shaobo, head of traffic police in Zhengning county, where the school is located, later said that 20 people had died and 44 were in hospital - two “critical” and 12 with serious injuries.
The impact of the crash drove the front of the minibus back into the seats, ripped open the top and buckled the sides of the vehicle. The front of the truck was damaged only slightly.