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December 19, 2009

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Drive is on to end truck overloads

ALARMED by a rash of fatal accidents, Shanghai's environmental authorities announced a campaign to closely supervise trucks involved with the city's rush of construction.

Special inspection teams have been set up to check all the construction sites in downtown to prevent any overloaded or dirty trucks from getting on the streets, said Shanghai Greenery and Public Sanitation Bureau yesterday.

The campaign started this week and will last until the Chinese Lunar New Year's Eve, February 13.

The bureau is making sure that each construction site designates at least two employees to check dump trucks for overloading before they leave the site.

The trucks are also supposed to be clean, so that their license plates are clearly legible and their tires don't track mud through city streets.

Since mid-November, 14 people have died in accidents involving overloaded or unsafe trucks.

The most recent tragedy came on Wednesday, when a nine-year-old girl was crushed by a cement truck that crashed into a moped driven by her grandfather.

The plant of the Tianli Commodity Concrete Co Ltd on Luoyang Road, in Meilong Town of Minhang District, whose truck was involved in Wednesday's accident, yesterday promised efforts to keep a closer watch on its trucks after parents of the students in the Luoyang Primary School, 50 meters away from the works, demanded the plant be shut down.

Some 181 families of the students of the school signed a letter to the government.

The letter requests that the concrete works opposite the school be closed and the dump trucks of the Lotus Riverside complex, 100 meters away from the school, be banned.

The Meilong government made no comments by last night.


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