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32 killed on China's smog-hit roads

by Staff Writers
Beijing (AFP) Oct 10, 2010
At least 32 people have been killed in traffic accidents in China over the weekend as heavy smog and fog shrouded huge swathes of the country, state press said Sunday.

Eight people were killed and dozens injured when up to 30 vehicles were involved in a pile-up in central Henan province on Sunday, the China News Service reported, while seven died in an accident in neighbouring Anhui province.

On Saturday, at least 17 people were killed and more than 20 injured when a passenger coach hit a cement truck in thick fog in Jiangsu Province in eastern China, Xinhua news agency said.

The State Meteorological Bureau issued a health warning over the heavily polluted air, advising motorists to cut their speed.

"The fog and smog has resulted in a sharp drop in air quality that can impact health. Residents need to take appropriate measures to protect themselves," the bureau said.

Eleven provinces and regions, including the capital Beijing, were affected, it said, with visibility reduced to 100 metres (yards) in some areas.

China suffers from some of the worst air pollution in the world, with its high dependency on coal and a growing number of automobiles largely to blame for increasing environmental degradation.

As the world's largest coal user, China's more than 1,400 coal-fired electrical plants produce at least 375 million tonnes of coal ash every year -- 2.5 times the quantity in 2002, Greenpeace China said last month.



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Honda launches hybrid Fit to take on Toyota's Prius
Tokyo (AFP) Oct 8, 2010
Honda Motor on Friday launched a hybrid version of its popular Fit subcompact car in Japan, making it the cheapest petrol-electric car available in the nation. The Fit Hybrid went on sale with a starting price of 1.59 million yen (19,000 dollars), cheaper than any other hybrid vehicle in Japan. The conventional Fit is priced at about 1.2 million yen. Honda's Insight hybrid is also priced ... read more







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