Law and Enforcement


A mainland driver was rescued unconscious from his cargo truck after he drove into railings – 46 year-old Mr Zhong died two hours later in hospital without regaining consciousness

A truck driver has died after an unexplained crash on a controlled road between the mainland border and Hong Kong.

46-year-old mainland driver Mr Zhong was headed towards Yuen Long from Shenzhen along the restricted San Sham Road at 10pm, when, approaching the roundabout at San Tin Public Transport Interchange, he reportedly suddenly wavered off course and hit railings.

According to police, the cross-border truck, with both Hong Kong and mainland plates, continued for about 100 metres before hitting railings again and coming to a halt.

Police say the driver was “trapped” in the truck cab but video footage from the scene shows the cab intact and the damage to the truck appears largely cosmetic.

Fire crews rushed Zhong to North District Hospital unconscious, where he died, without regaining consciousness, two hours later.

Hong Kong police say they have jurisdiction in the case.

Truck drivers have been under increasing strain since the fifth wave peak in Hong Kong and a rising number of cases in mainland China.

The first truck under a new centralised cargo plan arrives in Tsing Yi. Inset: the unlicensed truck is greeted by Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan Fan (left of standing group).

All truck drivers now need to have a nucleic acid test to return to the mainland, adding to journey times: authorities say they are conducting around 1,300 tests a day, although less than 1 per cent have shown up positive.

On 11 March, the governments of Hong Kong, Guangdong Province and Shenzhen municipality announced a new “closed loop” cargo system of centralised cargo transfer points.

Controversially, the first truck greeted by Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan Fan and the Permanent Secretary for Transport and Housing (Transport), Mable Chan, did not have Hong Kong licence plates, bearing only a mainland registration, despite driving through almost the full length of New Territories on Hong Kong’s public roads.

“The governments of both sides plan to continue to carry out the cargo trial runs until the end of this month so as to review and adjust the detailed arrangements,” said the government in a statement.

Transport Department has not commented on the licensing issue.




1 reply »

  1. I’m more fascinated by the mention of ‘unlicensed’ trucks. Much like genuine liability concerns with the emergency use of mainland medical personnel: with our legal values this side of the border, these questions are reasonable and ought be answered. In the case of the medics, the subsequent backlash (to the journalists) was not without point either. Despite the genuine questioning, one might perceive a negative undertone to these questions involving Mainland China.

    Which brings me to my point. The truck is not licensed for Hong Kong: but I do presume it IS licensed, in Guangdong. Indeed, it is missing the Hong Kong license plate, which is the established mechanism for cross border traffic. At least the article (vs. the caption) did clarify this. However while the licensing issues are an indisputable point of fact, the mention almost conjures images of marauders running amok through our city.

    It may be “controversial”, but it need not be. I’ve long been a proponent of increased cross border traffic. I curiously admired the colourful Nepalese trucks once crossing into Zhangmu in Tibet (sadly, that crossing now destroyed due to an earthquake); they did not carry Chinese license plates. Nor do to the Kazakh trucks entering Xinjiang, or Vietnamese trucks entering Yunnan. I don’t doubt they nonetheless have insurance or registration requirements.

    Our current licensing regime, despite the official narratives, appears the result of colonial era policy (understandable at the time) and the usual Hong Kong government bureaucracy: that is, cautious reluctance towards change. Yes, our border crossings have capacity limits: so too do the Woodlands and Tuas crossings between Singapore and Malaysia. With surprisingly higher per-capita vehicle ownership in the former, despite its small size, there is nonetheless no requirement for cross border plates before one can drive to the other. A fee (for Malaysians entering Singapore), or checks on fuel levels (to prevent cross-border rule runs) are all possible solutions to specific fears. Fundamentally though, the current dual-plate system appears to achieve little more than appeasement to those who have already sunk hundreds of thousands (if not a million) into the privilege of owning one.

    (Yes, we drive on the “wrong” side of the road: but my simple answer is “UK and Europe”).

    So going back to the article, I think we’re barking up the wrong tree here. If this is the start of a sensible easement of cross border traffic, then i’m all for it.

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