18 kindergarteners killed in head-on collision, school van severely overloaded

From Netease:


November 16, 9:40 am, a severe car accident occurred in Yulin County, Qingyang City, Gansu Province. A dump truck carrying coal smashed into a kindergarten school bus in a head-on collision.  The accident already caused 20 deaths, the bus driver and four kindergarteners were killed instantly and 15 others died in the hospital.

The so called school bus is actually just a small van which was supposed to carry maximum of 9 people.  However according to Gansu Province emergency team, this school van was carrying total of 64 people at the time of the accident, including one bus driver, one kindergarten teacher and 62 kindergarteners.

School bus driver and 4 children were killed at the scene, 14 children and the teacher already died in the hospital.  The remaining 44 children were injured, 13 seriously injured.





CCTV reporter interviewed the traffic police:

Police: “…according to our preliminary investigation, the cause of the accident was because, the kindergarten school van’s maximum capacity is 9 people, but actually was carrying 64 people. ”

Reporter: “You said, this van’s maximum capacity is 9 people, but actually was carrying 64 people?”


“Are all 64 people kids?”

“There is 1 driver and 1 teacher.”

“So there are 62 children. It is difficult for us to imagine a 9-person van carried 62 children. It is really shocking.  But do the parents know this is going on with this kindergarten?  Is this one time thing, or is this something happens everyday? ”

“According to our investigation, each day is different, some days there are more people and some days less…”

“When the accident happened, it was 9:40 am.  This time they supposed to be in school already.”

“The accident time is actually 9:15 am, we received the report at 9:35 am.”

“Where were they going?”

“They were going to the kindergarten.”

“How is the driver and the teacher now?”

“They both were killed.”

“Out of the 20 people who died how many were children.”

“Just one driver and one teacher, the rest are children.”

“How was the weather like and the driving condition at the time.”

“It was foggy, visibility was less than 50 meters.”

“We know that it was a head-on collision between the dump truck and the school van.  As you said before, the preliminary conclusion was the school van with capacity of 9 people was carrying 64 people, seriously overloading passengers.  But which car hit which car?”

“During the head-on collision, the school van was driving on the opposite side of the road.”

  1. To whoever translated this article: Verb forms that end with -ing usually mean that the noun in front of the verb CARRIED OUT the action. If a person is “overloading” a tray, he is putting too much on the tray. However, when you are talking about a state the noun is in, the -ed form is used. You should therefore write “the van was overloaded”, NOT “the van was overloading.”

  2. Whoever approved to stuff 64 kids in a 9 person van should end up in hell
    RIP for those 18 kids

  3. Senseless tragedy here. The driver had to be one of the dumbest of the dumb. How in the world can you pack 64 kids in that little van? I am shocked that this driver did not notice that the van was swaying in the rear due to excessive and speed. Tires can pop. Springs can collapse. Brakes can overheat. Steering control arms can snap. To knowingly allow a employee to do this and most likely insist on them doing this is criminal in itself. Are traffic laws not enforced in the countryside? The employer really needs to step up to the plate get transport vans with seatbelts for each student. If the Chinese execution squads can roam the countryside in new Dodge Sprinter vans with seatbelts and luxuries for the staff, than why is it that we can’t provide the 10 passenger Dodge Sprinter vans for the children?

    1. No, traffic laws are not enforced in the countryside. It’s not uncommon to be driving along at 80kmh on a divided highway and have a truck going the wrong way come at you head-on in your lane. That actually happened to me in China a couple years ago (we pulled off the road before it could hit us).

      1. Thanks for the info. I didn’t know. I thought that they would be more stricter in the countryside than city PD.

  4. Passenger rules are generally different in underdeveloped regions whether in China, India, or South Africa. Yes it is sad that many lives were lost or injured in this accident, but it is not unusual to see overloaded vans, trucks or even motorcycles.

    The issue I have is with the police assessment (as reported here, at least). They say that the cause of the accident is because the 9-person van was carrying 64 people. Let me restate it: The cause of a head-on collision with a dump truck is because the 9-person van was carrying 64 people. Bull.

    Negligence by the driver—such as lack of sleep, drunkenness, distracted by a cellphone—can be reasons for the driver to drive on the other side of the road. Or… not adjusting to poor weather conditions by driving slower and more carefully. But to just have an overloaded vehicle in itself is not a reason.

    1. An overloaded vehicle can and will cause a crash such as this. Combine a overloaded van, with a inexperienced driver you have a recipe for disaster. One slight movement of the steering wheel can cause the van to sway and the driver lose control. The springs on this van were NOT designed to handle 4,000 pounds with about 75% of the weight crammed into the back on metal bench like objects. With the excessive weight, it can accerlate metal fatigue and if a steering control arm or spring snaps, it can send the van into oncoming traffic or trees. Either way not good. I am saddened and angered by this. I guess if someone speaks up in the countryside, they get punished big time or maybe this is the Chinese government’s poor attempt at population control and selective population growth. But I know one thing,,, this is NOT the will of the Chinese people. The citizens want better for their kids.

    2. Vehicles are designed to keep a certain number of occupants safe or at least to mitigate traumatic injury from impact with other vehicles or stationary object, even in China… No one expects everyone to emerge free from trauma or death when there is a collision with a large truck, however to pack children in a van as if they were cantaloupes is absolutely ignorant and criminally negligent.

      The so called “voice of reason” appears to be a shill for clever semantics and the typical third world peasant mentality bravado that individual pluck will overcome failures to regulate and proper enforcement.

  5. Very sad.

    Children (of any country) shouldn’t have to pay (especially with their lives) for stupid bureaucrats.

  6. Average weight of a kindergartener is about 45lbs. Average weight of a Chinese adult is about 120lbs. 62*45 + 120*2 = 3030lbs. Assuming the van can carry 9 adults at say 200lbs each, 9*200=1800lbs. So this van was overloaded by about 1000-1200lbs give or take. That’s bad, but not horrendously bad as you might think. Whats more import, compound the weight with the fact that it’s a chinese-made van. It’s got the same safety features as a 1964 VW bus. With so much weight, you’ve got a lot of inertia, even at slower speeds. But I’m sure the brakes, tires, crumplezones etc on that bucket of bolts were seriously subpar by western standards.

  7. So, what the hell?

    Even if the van had only 9 kids in it, they would still be all dead.

    It’s the moron drivers fault not how many kids can fit in the van.

    1. Wrong… Most quality passenger vans with the standard 10 passenger layout and seatbelts would have provided ample protection for all on board EXCEPT of course for the driver and passenger death chair next to him. The key is everybody must be seatbelted. One unbelted person can act like a 2,000 flying missile flying through the van upon impact.

  8. All the China made school buses goes to the west free and the China kids ride in pickup trucks.

    Fucking dumb China thinking, those Chinese cocksuckers will get their face soon. Bloody mess.

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