Picture for representation
Picture for representation Reuters

A 56-vehicle pile-up on an expressway in Shanxi province, northern China, caused by snowy weather, claimed 17 lives and injured as many as 37 people on 21 November.

The accident disrupted the traffic as a large part of the highway was blocked. After initial investigation, police concluded that the cold, foggy, slick weather conditions on the highway triggered the accident. However, the exact cause of the accident still remains unknown and an investigation has been ordered.

Mostly large trucks were involved in the accident and the authorities dispatched firefighters and doctors immediately after they were alerted about the mishap. The rescue team and local police also rushed to the spot and pulled out the victims from the mangled vehicles.

Xinhua News Agency also reported that the injured victims are in stable condition. According to the World Health Organisation, around 200,000 people die on Chinese roads each year. The accidents, experts argue, occur mostly due to high speeds, aggressive driving and neglect of basic traffic rules. It was also observed that most of the vehicles in China fail to leave adequate braking distance.

It was also reported that to improve the road safety standards in China, the government has recently launched a massive crackdown on the overloading of trucks.