Human error behind fatal expressway collapse

Updated: 2013-02-03 08:24


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ZHENGZHOU - Chinese authorities have confirmed that an expressway viaduct collapse in Central China's Henan province that left 10 dead and 11 injured was a serious accident caused by multiple human errors.

Those suspected of being involved in the accident have been taken into police custody, according to a statement issued by the investigation team Saturday.

An explosion occurred on a truck carrying fireworks on the expressway linking Lianyungang city in East China's Jiangsu province and Horgos, a border port in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region in the country's far west.

An initial investigation at the scene found that the explosion caused the collapse.

According to the investigation team, the fireworks were manufactured by a factory in Northwest China's Shaanxi province that had illegally produced fireworks.

The transportation packaging, which simply consisted of plastic sacks, was also not in line with relevant regulations, the team said.

Moreover, the fireworks manufacturer hired an unqualified contractor in Hebei province to transport the illegal products without checking the contractor's qualifications and licenses or that of the contractor's drivers.

The items were covered up as ordinary goods and were not carried in special vehicles designed to transport fireworks, the team said.

Relevant people from both the manufacturer and the transport enterprise are suspected of law and regulation violations.

A joint work team of officials from local authorities as well as Wang Dexue, vice head of the State Administration of Work Safety, Huang Ming, vice minister of public security, and Feng Zhenglin, vice minister of transport, was sent to the scene to guide rescue work and the investigation.

The work team has vowed serious punishments for violations involving hazardous products and required resolute efforts to prevent similar accidents.

Rescue work is ongoing at the scene of the collapse.