At least 11 Chinese kindergarten children have died after the minivan they were travelling to school in, plunged into a pond.
Fifteen children were in the vehicle when it crashed in a rural part of southern Jiangxi province.
Chinese TV reports that the van may have been travelling too fast and was forced to swerve to avoid a parked car. The driver has been arrested.
The accident is one of a string of deadly road accidents in China. In rural areas, many buses and trucks
are old and badly maintained.
“(I saw) a teacher at the door. She was holding a child up so that she stayed above the water. It was my daughter so I stretched out my hand and pulled her up. Then I pulled out another child the teacher was holding. I tried to save anyone I could,” said Tong Huibing, local resident and father of one of the survivors.
Three children died on the spot. Another eight died at a local hospital after being pulled from the pond.
There was much public anger after the deaths of 18 nursery school children in a similar bus crash in November 2011.
After that accident, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao
pledged more money for school bus services.