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"We are saddened to hear about the accident in Utah involving a bus carrying Chinese tourists. We are thankful to authorities in Utah for their assistance."
On Friday, a bus carrying many Chinese tourists careened off a road and crashed near Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah, killing four people and injuring the remaining 26 people aboard, several of them critically, authorities reported.
The cause of the crash, which occurred at about 11:30 a.m. on State Route 12 just west of the park, was under investigation, but weather did not appear to be a factor, state Highway Patrol and Garfield County Sheriff’s Department officials said.
Thirty people, including the driver, were aboard the bus when it swerved across the road and back before rolling over against a guard rail and coming to rest upright, authorities said. Photos from the scene showed the vehicle’s roof crushed in on top of the passenger compartment.
The 26 survivors were taken to various hospitals with injuries ranging from minor to life-threatening, according to a Utah Highway Patrol spokesman, Corporal Chris Bishop. At least five people were critically injured, Bishop said, noting that figure was a downward revision from the Highway Patrol’s initial report that 12 to 15 people were critically injured.
Sheriff’s spokeswoman Denise Dastrup said five of the injured were evacuated to hospitals by helicopter.
The Chinese Embassy in Washington said on Twitter that it was sending diplomatic personnel to the area to further assist the victims. “We are saddened to hear about the accident in Utah involving a bus carrying Chinese tourists. We are thankful to authorities in Utah for their assistance,” the embassy said.