BEIJING – At least 47 people died Friday when flames engulfed a bus within minutes during rush hour in the city of Xiamen, Chinese media reported, the country’s deadliest road accident in recent years. Police said Saturday that they had identified a suspect who might be responsible for the fire and were conducting a criminal probe.
A burned-out shell was all that remained of the vehicle, which caught fire in the southeastern province of Fujian at about 6:30 p.m. Some online reports said about 100 people were on the bus, which was ablaze for 10 minutes before a series of explosions went off. One passenger told Xinhua news agency that she smelled gasoline before the blaze engulfed the vehicle.