China launches crackdown on road violations

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BEIJING, Dec 2 – The Ministry of Public Security will kick off a nationwide campaign on Tuesday to deter road traffic violations following an accident that killed 11 kindergarten children.

Coinciding with the country’s “Traffic Safety Day” on Tuesday, the campaign will focus on speeding, overloading, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, running red lights, occupying emergency lanes and failure to yield to pedestrians at zebra crossings, according to a ministry statement released Monday.

Last month, a collision between a truck and a minibus killed 11 kindergarten children and a driver in east China’s Shandong Province.

Police said the minibus, hired by a local kindergarten to operate as a school bus, was designed for eight passengers, but was overloaded at the time of the accident.

The ministry urged traffic police to strengthen road patrols as well as video surveillance and hand down severe punishment to violators.

Food and entertainment venues will be key areas for the crackdown, while government and Party committees in rural areas will be responsible for organizing special groups to supervise minivans and school buses.