China: 17 dead in road accident, as holiday rush begins

Sunday, 8 January 2023 (14:20 IST)
At least 17 people died and 22 others were injured early Sunday in a road accident that occurred outside the city of Nanchang in China's Jiangxi province.
It all happened just before 1:00 am (1700 GMT) in Nanchang County, as the traffic started to swell on the occasion of the annual Lunar New Year, authorities said and state broadcaster CCTV reported.
The cause of the accident is being investigated, the local traffic management brigade said.
According to local news outlet Jimu, a local resident said the accident occurred when a funeral tent, set up by mourners from the village of Taoling, was hit by a passing truck.

Most of the victims of the accident were funeral attendees, the report said.
Following the accident, Nanchang County traffic police issued a travel advisory to people and said the area has "foggy weather."
"Please pay attention to fog lights... slow down, drive carefully, keep a safe distance from the car in front, avoid pedestrians, do not change lanes and overtake," the advisory said.
Road accidents during holiday season
Road accidents used to be common in China because of inadequate safety regulations, however, their frequency has reduced in recent years due to tighter traffic regulations.
Around the holiday season, millions of migrant workers in China return to their homes for family gatherings. Traffic enforcement efforts are beefed up around this time to monitor the number of drivers and passengers and the condition of vehicles.
This year, with COVID-19 restrictions removed, the number of such trips is expected to double to more than 2 billion around the weeklong festival season that will start this year on January 22.

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