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North Point traffic accident victims to get help from govt

12 December 2018

A makeshift shrine to the dead at the spot where the bus finally came to a halt

By The SUN

Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam has promised help to the families of those who died or were injured in yesterday’s traffic accident in North Point.

 Cheung Hong street, from where the empty bus
rolled down and started mowing down people
Speaking to reporters before an Executive Council meeting today, Mrs Lam also said the police will thoroughly investigate the accident.

Four pedestrians were killed when an empty school bus rolled down Cheung Hong Street, then crossed busy King’s Road, before hitting a post and stopping on Hei Wo street.

Eleven others were injured, including the bus driver who used his body in a vain attempt to stop the vehicle; and two Filipinos, a 50-year-old man and 43-year-old woman whose identities are still being ascertained by Philippine Consulate officials.

According to staff at the Consulate’s assistance to nationals section, Hong Kong Police have said the two injured had Hong Kong ID cards, meaning they are not tourists, but declined to give their names.

The restaurant sideswiped by the bus: Many Filipinas often
wait for their wards at a school two doors down
Officers at the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration said they tried to check with the two hospitals where the injured Filipinos were taken: Ruttonjee in Wanchai and Pamela Youde Nethersole in Chaiwan, but could not get any other information.

Welfare officer Virsie Tamayao said she wanted to find out if they were migrant Filipino workers so their families back in the Philippines could be notified.

The Consulate officers were also keen to check on the patients, even if police have assured them that both are in stable condition.

The freak incident was the latest in a series of fatal traffic accidents to have happened in Hong Kong since the start of the year.

Citing Transport Department figures, Mrs. La said the number of fatal traffic accidents in the first 11 months of this year has increased by about 10% compared to the same period last year.

She promised the government will step up its effort to enhance road safety.

“As a result of the very serious, fatal traffic accidents this year, the relevant departments will, of course in light of the investigations of every incident, recommend and take the necessary measures," she said.

She said some safety measures are already being tightened up, and as promised in her Policy Address, public funds could be used to further enhance safety to protect the public.

As she spoke, cars were again parked on the slopes of Cheung Hong street, even as traces of blood, apparently from the injured bus driver, could still be seen on the ground.

The warped door of a restaurant that was hit when the bus mounted the pavement as it accelerated towards King’s Road also serves as a mute testimony to the mayhem that occurred the day before.

On Pei Ho street, where the bus came to a halt after hitting most of the casualties, solemn-faced pedestrians laid flowers and fruit offerings at a makeshift shrine to the dead.

But elsewhere in the area, it was back to business, and traffic along King’s Road was again as busy as ever.

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