14 have been killed and 32 injured in a fire that consumed a public bus in Ningxia’s Yinchuan city earlier this morning. The suspected arson attack reportedly took place a little after 7 a.m.
Ningxia’s public security department is currently searching for the suspected arsonist, who they have identified as a man named Ma Yongping. According to police, Ma owns three cars and they are on the lookout for all of them.
All injured victims are being treated at Ningxia Medical University General Hospital, with seven in intensive care and suffering from severe burns. The rest were fortunate enough to escape with only minor burns, including the 40-year-old bus driver, who is currently assisting the police with their investigation.
26-year-old Hu Yuxiang gave a statement about surviving the incident:
I was sitting at the front of the bus when suddenly people started screaming ‘Fire! Bus on Fire!’ When I turned around, the flames were racing toward me very quickly and before I knew it my shoes were on fire. I thought the bus was about to explode, and I was going to die. Then the door opened and we all rushed out.
Firefighters at the scene extinguished the blaze within 10 minutes.
Bound for Yinchuan Railway Station, the bus could have carried a maximum of 84 people. The state-owned Yinchuan Public Transport Co. Ltd. is currently completing a safety check of all its vehicles.
Watch a video of the burning bus below:
UPDATE: The arson suspect has been arrested.
— CCTVNEWS (@cctvnews) January 5, 2016
By Pinky Latt
[Images via NetEase / Xinhua // Video via CCTV]