Another 20 people were injured in the accident on a highway in rural Guizhou province.
27 people died in a bus crash in southwestern China on Sunday, the country’s deadliest road accident so far this year.
The accident happened on a highway in rural Guizhou province when the vehicle carrying 47 people “overturned,” Sandu county police said in a statement.
Emergency responders have been dispatched to the scene and 20 others are being treated for their injuries.
The accident happened in Qiannan county – a poor, remote mountainous region of Guizhou, home to a number of ethnic minorities.
Angered social media users demanded to know why a passenger car plowed down the highway in the early hours when many major roads in the province were closed to traffic.
One hundred toll stations have been closed in Guizhou because of COVID-19 restrictions, and long-distance passenger journeys across China are banned from operating between 2am and 5am.
Guizhou is in the midst of a COVID outbreak with more than 900 new infections in the past two days alone.
Its provincial capital Guiyang, home to six million residents, was closed in early September.
According to the police announcement, the bus was heading south in the direction of Guiyang to Libo district.
Road accidents are still common in China, where erratic enforcement and lax safety standards have resulted in numerous deaths over the years.