Bus kills 18 in China

A bus dodged an oncoming car and veered onto a roadside crowded with pedestrians and peddlers in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, killing 18 people and injuring 16, state-run media reported Wednesday.

The vehicle, carrying a driver and one passenger, slid 70 meters (230 feet) along pavement bustling with workers heading home and vendors selling snacks, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

Xinhua did not specify the condition of the people on the bus.

The Chinese news Web site Sina.com said that 19 instead of 18 died, and that seven or eight of the 16 injured people were badly hurt.

Police have detained the bus driver, the Web site reported.

A photo posted on Sina.com showed the crash scene strewn with bodies. Footage on Hong Kong's Cable TV showed workers reinstalling collapsed barricades.

A man who answered the phone at one of the hospitals treating victims said only that the hospital was handling the matter, and hung up. A police office in the district where the accident occurred referred questions to traffic police offices, where phone lines were busy.

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