ACCIDENT

19 Hongkongers hurt in Guangxi tour bus crash

Driver loses control in heavy rain and the coach rolls on its side; two people seriously injured

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 07 May, 2013, 10:03am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 08 May, 2013, 5:04am

Mainland authorities will investigate the cause of a crash in which a driver lost control of a tour bus on a wet road in Guangxi and it flipped on its side, injuring 19 Hongkongers.

One of those hurt, a 57-year-old woman, was thrown from the bus when it crashed in Longan county at about 8pm on Monday.

"She sustained multiple injuries to her upper body and fractures," said Kenji Ng Yat-chuen, general manager of Taste Travel, which organised the five-day tour. He added that the woman was conscious in hospital, but breathing with the aid of an oxygen machine.

She was one of two people seriously hurt in the crash. The others injuries were minor.

The tourists were initially treated at a hospital in Longan county then transferred to another hospital in Nanning city yesterday for further examination and treatment.

"None of the injuries are life-threatening," Ng said.

The 19 injured Hongkongers were part of a 21-member tour group leaving from Shenzhen on Sunday for a five-day trip to Guangxi.

The accident happened on the second day of their trip as they were on their way to Nanning after visiting Detian waterfall in Daxin county.

But as they were travelling through Longnan county, the driver lost control of the bus as it rounded a bend and it rolled on its side, Ng said.

He added that it was raining heavily at the time, which could have reduced visibility.

The 19 Hong Kong tourists and a mainland driver were injured, while another driver and the mainland tour guide were unhurt.

An initial investigation showed that the bus was travelling at about 60km/h in a 70km/h zone, according to the travel agency.

There were two drivers on the journey from the waterfall to Nanning because it takes about six hours. They both had more than seven years' experience as bus drivers, Ng said.

There was no evidence to suggest that the crash was the result of driver fatigue, he added.

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