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Mainland authorities detain ten after bus accident that killed 43

BEIJING -- Chinese authorities on Monday detained 10 people after 43 died in a horrific weekend accident when a van carrying inflammable liquid hit a bus on a motorway, state media said.

Police detained the group as part of an investigation into the “illegal transportation of hazardous chemicals,” a report by official news agency Xinhua said.

The collision in central Hunan province early Saturday triggered a fire and explosion which destroyed five vehicles, it said.

The death toll was previously reported to be 38.

Another six people were injured in the accident, which involved a double-decker long-distance bus, with capacity for 53 occupants.

The vehicle was traveling between the eastern coastal province of Fujian and Guizhou in the southwest when the crash occurred.

Fatal road accidents are a serious problem in China, particularly involving the country's often over-crowded long-distance buses.

In August 2012, at least 36 people died when a double-decker sleeper bus slammed into the rear of a methanol tanker and burst into flames in northern China.

The transportation of dangerous chemicals is also a major issue in China, with poor rural workers commonly flouting laws.

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