China bus crash kills at least 36, state media report

A passenger bus in China crashed into the wall of a tunnel on Thursday, leaving 36 people dead and 13 injured, according to officials.

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The accident happened in an expressway tunnel in Shaanxi province as the passenger coach was in transit to Luoyang, a city in central China, from Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan, Xinhua News Agency reported.

Minister of Public Security Gio Shengkun ordered an investigation of the accident, Chinese state-media reported.

Highway accidents are common in China because of high speeds, aggressive driving and a failure to leave adequate braking distance.

The World Health Organization estimates that traffic accidents kill around 260,000 people in mainland China each year -- a rate of 18.8 in every 100,000 people.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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