A second fatal pedestrian crossing crash marked a day of pedestrian carnage as a heavy truck crushed a woman to death on a crossing on Castle Peak Road just a few hours after a taxi killed a woman on a similar crossing in Ngau Tau Kok.
Police arrested driver Mr Poon, 31, after his truck knocked over Ms Chi, 56, on the crossing near Tsing Sin Playground on Castle Peak Road – Castle Peak Bay. The truck struck Chi at 9.58am – ambulance crews rushed her to Tuen Mun Hospital unconscious where she was declared dead just half an hour later.
The truck, carrying a widebore water pipe, was still straddling the crossing as police investigated the interior of the cab. Driver Poon is still in custody as at 5.20pm, say police.
According to the Transport Department’s Road Users’ Code, drivers are required to give way to pedestrians on such crossings. “Give way to any pedestrians on the crossings. The elderly, the disabled and children may need more time to cross. Do not harass pedestrians, for example by revving up your engine or creeping forward,” says the guide.
The crash raises questions of the government’s new policy to relax licence requirements for drivers of such heavy trucks. Under new laws that came into effect last week, drivers need wait only a year after passing their private car test to start driving heavy goods vehicles. The government defended the new law saying the trucking industry needed “new blood” and that new car drivers are not proven any more dangerous than experienced car drivers.
But the government’s own Road Safety Council said it could not provide data to back this up.
There were 4,179 deaths and injuries involving goods vehicles in 2019, according to Transport Department figures. In the first eight months of 2020, there were 75 deaths and 11,263 injuries on Hong Kong’s roads.