Overcrowded China School Bus Crashes, Kills 18 Children and Two Adults

A small kindergarten bus built to carry 8 passengers crashed this morning with more than 60 people on board. The bus crash killed 18 children and two adults. Another 45 people were injured.

According to Channel News Asia, the nine-seater bus was severely overcrowded when it crashed into a truck on Wednesday morning in Gansu province. According to local reports, it is common in China, especially in rural area, for school buses to be dangerously over-packed with students.

The kindergarten bus collided at high speed with an oncoming truck. According to the Wall Street Journal, the bus was driving on the wrong side of the road.

Gao Shaobo, head of traffic police in Zhengning county, where the school is located, said:

“The van was driving on the wrong side of the street. Both the truck and the van were going at high speeds at the time.”

The two people in the truck were not killed in the crash. Chinese police have detained the driver of the truck.

China has strict regulations against over-crowding school buses, but the practice is still common.

According to China News Asia, 35 people were killed last month after a bus crashed on the highway. In September, nine more died when a bus was rear-ended by a cement truck. In 2010, China had 70,000 people die in road accidents, which is about 190 fatalities a day. That number was down from 2005, when China had 99,000 fatalities in 450,000 accidents.