A vehicle carrying kindergarten children fell into a pond Thursday in China’s Hunan province, killing all 11 people, including three adults, on board the van.
The accident reportedly took place Thursday in Xiangtan city, adjacent to Changsha, a mountainous region in China’s central Hunan province. The seven-seater van was carrying the children back home from school, along with three adults, Xinhua reported Friday, adding that two of the adults were teachers. Officials said that authorities were not notified about the accident immediately because of the remote location.
"It was commonplace for the kindergarten vehicle to overload," the father of one of the children in the van said, according to Xinhua. Officials have reportedly launched an investigation into the case.
The accident follows a Chinese court’s decision on Wednesday to jail two policemen for not following their duties properly, which led to a bus filled with 64 people to collide with a coal truck in November 2011, killing 20 people and injuring 42 children in western China, Xinhua reported. The nine-seater private school bus was reportedly overloaded with 62 kindergartners and two adults. The crash had caused an uproar at the time, forcing then Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao to pledge more support for the safety of school buses.
In December 2012, another bus carrying 15 kindergarten children sank into a pond in Guixi city in Jiangxi province in China’s southeast, killing 11 children, after the driver, who was reportedly speeding, lost control of the vehicle while making a sudden turn.