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'Suicidal' driver behind Taiwan bus fire, investigators report

Chinese authorities have demanded extra safety measures for mainland visitors after the incident. In photo: A relative breaks down at Chungli funeral parlour in Taoyuan, northern Taiwan on July 21, 2016. Photograph: (AFP)

Taipei City, Taiwan Sep 10, 2016, 12.52 PM (IST)
A ‘suicidal’ bus driver was behind the bus crash in Taiwan that killed an entire group of 25 Chinese tourists in July, investigators said on Saturday.

Authorities had earlier said that the driver, Su Ming-cheng, had been drunk when his bus caught fire.

Investigations pointed out that Su, who was driving to the airport, poured gasoline over the driver’s seat and near the exit before igniting the fire with a lighter.

“(Su), who was drunk driving, committed suicide by pouring gasoline and setting a fire, killing other passengers," local prosecutors said in a statement.

Records of phone calls between Su and his family were also recovered; the calls have Su's relatives pleading with him not to commit suicide.

Su had previously been charged with scuffling with a tour guide and sexually assaulting one person. He was even briefly suspended for fighting with a tour guide.

Chinese authorities have demanded extra safety measures for mainland visitors after the incident.

(WION with inputs from agencies)
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