Report: China says angry steel worker set bus fire that killed 24

Thursday, July 15, 2010

China says passenger set bus fire that killed 24

BEIJING — An angry Chinese steel worker started the shuttle bus fire that killed 24 people and injured 19 near Shanghai earlier this month, state media reported Thursday.

The official Xinhua News Agency cited police in Wuxi, a city near Shanghai, as saying that a 57-year-old employee deliberately set the blaze and was among those killed.

Steel worker Dong Chuansheng was paranoid and held a grudge, Xinhua said without providing additional details. The report didn’t say how Dong started the July 4 fire on the private shuttle bus that ferried workers to the Xuefeng Steel Company’s No. 630 Factory.

Xinhua said 45 people were on the bus when it was engulfed in flames. Thirteen of the 19 injured remain hospitalized, it said.

In a separate incident last year, a man ignited a bucket of gasoline on an overcrowded bus in the southern city of Chengdu. The bus had sealed windows and no emergency exits, preventing escape, and 27 people died.

That fire prompted safety checks for public buses and better driver training around the country.

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