23 Jul 2011

Fatal bus fire

6:45 am on 23 July 2011

A bus has caught fire on a highway in central China, killing at least 41 people on board.

The Xinhua news agency reported that six passengers and the driver had escaped the inferno in Xinyang City, in the province of Henan.

The cause of the fire is not yet known, but State television said the bus was also carrying hazardous goods.

The fire happened at 4am on Friday on a section of the highway linking Beijing to the southern city of Zhuhai.

China has a poor road safety record. The BBC reports that almost 70,000 people died in road accidents in 2009.