22 injured as two minibuses collide
Almost two dozen people were injured when two red minibuses collided head-on on Hiram's Highway in Sai Kung yesterday.
Police said 22 people were injured after a Sai Kung-bound minibus from Kwun Tong apparently crossed into an oncoming lane to overtake another vehicle, crashing into a Mong Kok-bound minibus near Marina Cove, Pak Sha Wan, at about 4pm.
Seven fire engines and 14 ambulances were sent to the crash scene.
'One of the drivers had his head trapped in the front [of the minibus],' Tai Po fire station chief Ronald Wong said.
The driver was pulled out alive but suffered a number of fractures.
The police said one of the seriously injured was taken by helicopter to Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital, while 18 other wounded were taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Tseung Kwan O Hospital.
The Hospital Authority also sent a medical team to the site to help with the immediate treatment of less seriously injured.
Police said there were no skid marks on the road from the minibuses. The front sections of both vehicles were badly damaged.
The vehicles' windows were also smashed and fuel was splashed over the road.
Officers were investigating whether speed was a factor in the crash.
The two-lane highway is a popular route for locals making weekend getaways to Hong Kong's countryside.
The crash also occurred on a section of the highway that is part of a road improvement scheme, according to the Transport Department's website. The website does not say when public consultation for the project is due to be completed.
A fatal accident involving a tour bus happened nearby in 2008, killing 19 members of a Japanese religious group.
Their vehicle careered down New Hiram's Highway and toppled over onto a noise barrier at the Nam Pin Wai roundabout.