A garbage truck driver has reportedly run over and killed a woman who was crossing a road at a blackspot notorious among pedestrians as well as hikers and trail runners tackling the city’s Wilson Trail.
Ms Chow, 88, was crossing Kai Tin Road at around 2.30pm yesterday when the driver ran her down, severing her leg and leaving a bloody trail along the road. Chow’s broken walking stick and shopping trolley were left behind as emergency crews rushed her, unconscious, to Queen Elizabeth Hospital. She died around 12 hours later, at 2am on 30 July.
Police arrested the garbage worker, Mr Lau, 63, for dangerous driving causing grievous bodily harm. A police source says the charge will be upgraded to dangerous driving causing death.
The stretch of road has seen dozens of deaths or serious injuries, including in January and March 2020 where female pedestrians aged 76 and 81 respectively lost their lives. Transport Department erected railings and warning signs to deter shoppers from crossing the road from the mall to the bus stop, but residents say the alternatives – a footbridge within the mall – are too far away.
As well as elderly shoppers crossing roads, foot traffic in Lam Tim includes hikers and runners embarking on Section 3 of the 78km Wilson Trail, which starts just yards from the point where Ms Chow was killed.
Michael Maddess, director of Action Asia Events and a trail runner who has ranked highly on the Wilson Trail, says the roads can be dangerous. “Any sections of the Wilson that get near the MTR, you need to be on high alert as anything can happen with so much traffic,” he told Transit Jam.
In fact, many hikers or runners now prefer to start Wilson Section 3 at Yau Tong MTR Exit A2, citing safety and convenience. Such a route, although unofficial, “removes the need to walk alongside the traffic-choked main road,” says The Serious Hiker’s Guide to Hong Kong.
The crash yesterday is the third fatal garbage truck crash in six weeks. In mid-July, a garbage truck driver struck and killed a pedestrian in Mong Kok without stopping. And a month earlier, a sports car collided with a garbage truck on Nathan Road, killing its passenger.