Two workers killed as tyre blown off truck

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 17 May, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 17 May, 2011, 12:00am

Two workers were killed when a 110kg tyre shot out from a wheel of a crane truck in a container yard in Lok Ma Chau yesterday.

Ho Chi-ho, 24, died instantly, while Yan Hao-huai, 19, was taken unconscious to hospital where he was later declared dead.

They were among four workers repairing the axle of the crane truck at the Mai Po Lung Road site when the incident occurred at about 10.30am.

Police said the two victims were trying to remove a 1.5-metre-diametre tyre when it was blown off the wheel by what appeared to be air pressure.

'The two workers next to the wheel were hit by the runaway tyre and thrown about five metres,' said Lok Ma Chau divisional commander, Superintendent So Chak-hung.

He said the tyre came to rest against a nearby delivery van after damaging the windscreen and bumper.

Ho was hit by the full force of the tyre's movement and died instantly, police said.

Yan was unconscious when taken to North District Hospital, where doctors declared him dead at 11.14am.

The other workers escaped injury as they were at the front of the crane truck, So said. 'We are investigating what caused the air pressure to occur.'

Lo Kok-keung of Polytechnic University's department of mechanical engineering said it was possible that part of the truck's braking system broke, releasing compressed air that pushed the tyre out.

He said the force involved must have been great to move a 110kg object and anyone hit by such a force was unlikely to survive.

Yan was survived by his mainland wife who is due to give birth to their first child in July, said Chan Kam-hong, chief executive of the Association for the Rights of Industrial Accident Victims.

Chan said there were three similar incidents from September last year to March in which one worker died and four were injured.

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