Eight people were killed when their vehicle collided with a tanker truck on the highway that links Oruro, a region in western Bolivia, with the central region of Cochabamba, a police investigator said.

The accident occurred around 8:30 a.m. on Saturday near Confital, a town about 128 kilometers (some 80 miles) from the city of Cochabamba, police Capt. Jose Terceros told Efe.

The crash happened when a public transit van collided head-on with the tanker truck, Terceros, who is overseeing the investigation, said.

The eight people riding in the van were killed, Terceros said.

The government has been trying for years to reduce the number of traffic accidents in Bolivia.

President Evo Morales's administration enacted a law in January 2010 that cracked down on bus drivers caught working drunk, inexperienced drivers and drivers who work excessive hours.

The law's goal is to reduce accidents, which kill an average of 1,000 people and injure about 40,000 others annually in this Andean nation, according to International Automobile Federation figures. EFE