An aerial photo showing the multi-vehicle collision on Zhengxin Yellow River Bridge in Zhengzhou, China, on December 28. Picture used for illustrative purposes only. AFP
Nearly 50 vehicles were involved in multiple collisions along a highway in Hunan province within the span of 10 minutes on Saturday evening, "with some vehicles catching on fire", local traffic police said in a statement.
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Footage republished online by the state-owned People's Daily showed multiple burning trucks bearing the logos of delivery companies, crushed and overturned cars, and a dark cloud of smoke rising from the crashes.
Traffic police said 16 people were killed in the pile-up, including seven in a single collision, while 66 others were injured.
"The injured were promptly sent to hospital for thorough treatment, including eight whose injuries were relatively severe, whose vital signs are currently stable," the traffic police said.
People's Daily said the pile-up took place in the provincial capital Changsha, and that more than 180 rescue workers were dispatched to the scene on Saturday.
China's emergency management ministry on Sunday said it had called for an investigation into the cause of the accident.
President Ranil Wickremesinghe has instructed relevant officials to provide all necessary assistance to the students injured in the accident and if required, airlift those seriously injured to capital Colombo.
An Asian was killed on Sunday morning after his vehicle collided with a truck on Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Road leading to Sharjah.
“Traffic patrols and first responders were immediately dispatched to the accident site where they facilitated the arrival of the ambulance and other emergency teams and assisted the transfer of the severely injured to a hospital for necessary treatment,” Al Mazrouei said.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC) expressed its sincere condolences to Pakistan and Afghanistan and their peoples, as well as to the families of the victims of this tragedy. It also wished the injured a speedy recovery.
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The initiative reflects the wise leadership's keenness to provide assistance to affected families and alleviate their suffering ahead of the Holy Month of Ramadan.