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A fist fight between a woman passenger and a driver caused a bus to plunge from a bridge into the mighty Yangtze River in southwest China, killing at least 13 people, police said on Friday.

Newly-released footage from the bus' on-board surveillance camera shows how a passenger appeared to lash out at the driver who in turn retaliated, seconds before the bus crashed and plunged into the Yangtze River. She walked up to the driver's seat and scolded him.

The driver then suddenly yanks the wheel hard to the left and the bus veers onto incoming traffic, striking a auto before breaking through the rails of the bridge crossing the Yangtze River, in the southwest city of Chongqing.

A statement from Wanzhou district police said the 48-year-old woman asked the driver to pull over after she missed her stop.

A crane salvages the wreckage of a bus after it plunged off a bridge into the Yangtze River in China's southwestern Chongqing early
Image The bus plunged into the river and was salvaged four days later

The bus then lost control and veered onto the wrong side of the road and collided into an oncoming auto before breaking through fencing and flying off a bridge over the river.

For days after the accident, the No. 22 bus lay at the bottom of the Yangtze River - in waters more than 70 meters (230 feet) deep.

Rescue workers and boats on the site where a public bus plunged into the Yangtze River after colliding with a vehicle in Chongqing, China on Oct 28, 2018. A previous investigation found that 15 people including the driver were on board the bus at the time. At one point, she took out her phone and started hitting him on the head with it. The driver of the auto which was hit by the bus was said to have sustained some injuries.

The statement concluded that both the passenger and the driver had broken laws for seriously endangering public safety.

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