5 dead, 18 injured as car strikes crowd of children outside school in China

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The driver was taken into custody after the crash around noon in the coastal city of Huludao in Liaoning province, state broadcaster CCTV said.

Chinese state media report 5 dead, 18 injured when car struck crowd of children outside school in northeastern city on Thursday.

The driver was taken into custody after the crash around noon in the coastal city of Huludao in Liaoning province, state broadcaster CCTV said.

Several children were hospitalized and the numbers of injured were still being tabulated, the reports said. The cause was under investigation, according to the reports.

Security camera footage showed a line of children crossing the street in front of their school when a car approaches, then changes lanes and swerves into a crowd of the children. At least half a dozen students appear to have been hit.

Government spokespersons reached by phone said they were not authorized to release information about the crash.

While it wasn’t clear if the crash was a deliberate attack, China has recently seen a number of such incidents.

Last month, a knife-wielding man drove a vehicle into a crowd of pedestrians in the eastern city of Ningbo, killing two people and wounding 16.

And in September, 11 people were killed and 44 hospitalized after a man drove an SUV deliberately into people at a plaza in the central province of Hunan, before jumping out and attacking victims with a dagger and shovel.

The most common motivations are identified as mental illness, alienation from society or a desire to settle scores.

Other deadly attacks have occurred at schools, including several in 2010 in which nearly 20 children were killed, prompting a response from top government officials and leading many schools to beef up security.

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