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Traffic accidents kill thousands in Guangdong
( 2003-10-21 09:08) (China Daily)

A total of 8,493 people were killed and 57,012 injured in traffic accidents in South China's Guangdong Province in the first nine months of this year.

He Guangping, deputy director general of the Guangdong Provincial Public Security Bureau, revealed the figures at a Guangzhou press conference at the weekend.

The number of deaths on the province's roads witnessed a year-on-year decrease of 4.08 per cent, but injuries increased slightly by 2.04 per cent.

Guangdong Province recorded a total of 53,352 traffic accidents between January and September, a reduction of 9.83 per cent compared eith the same period last year.

The direct economic losses caused by traffic accidents reached 248 million yuan (US$29.88 million), a reduction of 8.3 per cent.

Despite the reduction of the number of deaths and traffic cases in the first nine months of this year, traffic accidents are still the province's major killer, He said.

Guangdong, which borders Hong Kong and Macao, witnessed three serious fatal traffic accidents that claimed more than 10 lives each.

On June 6, a total of 32 passengers were killed when a coach fell into river in Dongyuan County, Heyuan. Another four persons were injured in the accident. This was the nation's most serious traffic accident this year.

On April 28, 20 people were killed and 11 injured in a traffic accident in Yaoping County of Chaozhou in eastern Guangdong.

And another 12 people were killed and two were injured when two vehicles collided with each other in Shixing County of Shaoguan in northern Guangdong on February 10, this year.

Guangdong recorded 118 fatal traffic accidents that involved at least three deaths each from January to September.

Overloading and speeding were the major causes of Guangdong's traffic accidents this year, He said.

He said that, starting from this year, his bureau will require all the coaches to gradually install a driving data recorder from this year in a bid to help cut the province's traffic accidents.

Coach companies and drivers will be seriously punished, including recalling their operational and driver licences, if they are found to be overloading and speedy driving, He said.

And all expressways will be equipped with electronic cameras to help monitor the operation of vehicles within the year.

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