Nineteen people were killed and 20 injured in a road traffic accident in eastern China’s Jiangxi province on Sunday, state media reported.
The injured had been sent to the hospital, state broadcaster CCTV reported, citing local authorities.
The accident took place just before 1am (1700 GMT) in Nanchang County, it reported, and the cause was “under in-depth investigation”.
Local news outlet Jimu, affiliated with the state-owned Hubei Daily Media Group, reported the accident took place when a truck hit a funeral procession.
People had been carrying out a roadside offering to the dead before planning to head to the crematorium on Sunday morning, a local woman surnamed Deng told the outlet.
They were hit by a truck, the report said, with most of the dead and injured being funeral attenders.
Another local man, surnamed Gong, told the outlet his wife had been killed in the accident and that they had been attending the funeral.
The truck had suddenly crashed into the back of the line, tearing through the group before finally reaching the hearse, he said.
The accident occurred as China began the 40-day period of lunar new year travel, in which millions of people are expected to be on the move, and lifted Covid quarantine requirements for inbound travellers.
This lunar new year public holiday, which officially runs from 21 January, will be the first since 2020 without domestic travel restrictions.
About an hour after news of the road accident emerged, Nanchang County traffic police issued travel tips to drivers saying the area was experiencing “foggy weather”.
“Driving visibility is poor, there is low visibility, which can easily cause traffic accidents,” it said.
“Please pay attention to fog lights … Slow down, drive carefully, keep a safe distance from the car in front, avoid pedestrians, do not change lanes and overtake,” it added.
Road accidents are common in China due to a lack of strict safety controls.
Last month, one person died during a highway pile-up in central China that involved hundreds of vehicles and was caused by low visibility in fog.
And in September, 27 passengers died after a bus transporting them to quarantine facilities in south-western Guizhou province flipped over on a motorway.
Agence France-Presse and Reuters contributed to this report