1 dead in crash of bus carrying Chinese pupils

Updated: 2016-09-26 11:39

By June Chang in San Francisco(China Daily USA)

  Print Mail Large Medium  Small 分享按钮 0

1 dead in crash of bus carrying Chinese pupils

A young girl died and 11 other people were injured when a charter bus carrying Chinese students from a trip to Yosemite National Park slammed into a tree on Saturday.

Among the 22 passengers, 17 were Chinese students ages 12 to 15, with four chaperones and the driver. Six children and the driver were among the injured.

The Chinese Consulate General in San Francisco responded to the accident immediately by sending a task force on Sunday morning, headed by Deng Fanhua, deputy consul-general.

"We'll do whatever we can to offer consular assistance to the Chinese citizens (in the accident)," said Luo Linquan, consul general in San Francisco.

The identity of the girl killed was not released by the consulate.

The accident happened on Highway 41 and Road 630, north of Oakhurst and south of Fish Camp, in east central California, according to The Associated Press.

The injured were taken by three helicopters and nine ambulances to Community Regional Medical Center in downtown Fresno and Valley Children's Hospital in Madera County.

Among the five admitted to Community Regional, two were in critical condition and three were in stable condition as of Saturday evening, hospital spokeswoman Mary Lisa Russell said.

Valley Children's Hospital spokeswoman Zara Arboleda confirmed that seven patients had been admitted but would not provide condition reports.

The California Highway Patrol (CHP) said on Sunday morning that four passengers had major injuries and six passengers had moderate to minor injuries. The 53-year-old driver from the Bay Area suffered moderate injuries.

The cause of the accident is under investigation. The bus was equipped with seatbelts, the CHP said, and the passenger who was killed had her seatbelt on. The CHP said the bus was heading down the mountain toward Oakhurst at 35-40 mph.

When the driver entered a curve north of Lewis Creek around 5:30 pm PT, he was traveling too fast and drifted off the west side embankment, according to the CHP.

The right side of the bus then hit a large tree and came to rest on its wheels in the southbound lane.

According to the AP, the 33-passenger chartered bus is owned by Top Line Charter of Monterey Park in the Los Angeles area.

Highway 41 was closed at the crash site, which is just south of Sugar Pine. The highway reopened at 9:34 pm, the CHP said.