China Digest, January 15, 2013
Car hits five pedestrians
Five people were hit by a van on Sunday afternoon in front of a subway station in Shunyi district. The driver failed to slow down for a yellow traffic light and drove through a pedestrian crossing before the people had permission to cross, the Beijing Evening News reports. One victim was in serious condition and all were taken to hospital. The driver was detained.
Workers demand back pay
About 100 migrant workers have been protesting in front of a construction company in the Zhongguancun area of Haidian district since Sunday morning, seeking about 7 million yuan (HK$8.6 million) in back pay, Newssc.org reports. The protesters are among about 500 Sichuan natives who had been working last year at one of the firm's construction sites in Tangshan , Hebei .
Phone clash at schools
The unrestricted use of mobile phones in the municipality's primary and high schools has created some problems, the Chongqing Economic Times reports. Some teachers complained that students were relying too much on search engines to find answers, while some pupils said the teachers took pictures or videos of their students acting inappropriately and e-mailed their parents.
State firm in bad shape
More than 80 per cent of over 3,200 employees at one of the largest state-owned enterprises in the municipality have health problems, according to a doctor who participated in the firm's health exam last year, the Chongqing Economic Times reports. About one-third of the unnamed firm's employees had high blood pressure, high cholesterol or fatty livers, due to alcohol abuse, eating too much and not exercising, according to the doctor.
Probe into inmate's death
District prosecutors are investigating the January 4 death in a Shenzhen hospital of a female inmate from the Baoan Detention Centre. The investigation was ordered after her husband said she was covered in bruises, the Shenzhen Economic Daily reports. The 40-year-old migrant worker was detained in September for allegedly stealing 2,130 yuan from a shop. The centre claimed that the woman started acting strangely, so they brought her to the hospital.
Help for the homeless
The government-run Shenzhen Aid Centre is planning to set up a volunteer team of 300 web-savvy people who can use microblogs and online chat rooms to relay information about homeless people in need, the Shenzhen Economic Daily reports. The volunteers would post data about the location and specific needs of the homeless. Acting on the information, aid centre workers would bring the people to the centre and give them food and clothing. The centre received 28 microblog tips and 50 phone calls around the New Year holiday.
Coach crash kills five
Five people died and 19 others were injured when an overloaded coach rolled over in Xifeng county, Guiyang , the West China City Daily reports. The 55-capacity bus was carrying 60 people when it struck a guard rail and rolled over at about 5am on an expressway. The 19 were taken to hospital, four of whom were in critical condition.
Snow, rain batter counties
Persistent rain and snow since January 4 have affected 24 counties across the province, causing direct economic losses of nearly 78 million yuan and affecting about 570,000 people, the Guizhou Metropolis Daily reports. More than 1,200 tonnes of food have been sent to the affected region by civil affairs authorities.
Bus bomb deaths rise to 11
The death toll from a bomb set off on a commuter bus in Shuangyashan on Friday morning rose to 11, after four people died in hospital. The key suspect in the bombing was also confirmed dead, Xinhua reports. The explosion occurred in Lingdong district at around 6.30am, and the blast also hit a bus in the opposite lane. Seven of the 52 passengers aboard the two vehicles died at the scene. Police were still investigating.
Gas blast kills mum, son
A woman in her 40s and her teenage son were killed when they were blown out of their sixth-floor apartment in Harbin by a gas explosion, Hljnews.cn reports. The blast happened at around 4am, but the cause of the explosion was not immediately known.
Quake sparks deadly leak
Eight people died and three others were injured after a mine collapse caused by an earthquake in Fuxin city on Saturday, Xinhua reports. The accident happened around 10.30pm, and the victims died from a natural gas leak triggered by the 2.0-magnitude quake.
Kidnap report 'was fake'
Police have denied a widely circulated online rumour that a three-year-old boy was kidnapped outside of a bilingual-education kindergarten on Yuxiu Road in Shenyang , the Chinese Business Morning View reports. Police said the kindergarten in question did not exist and there was no Yuxiu Road in the city.
'Heroic' maid sued by boss
An employer is suing his domestic helper after discovering that she had made up her account of rescuing a neighbour in a traffic accident, for which she had won nationwide praise in October. Eastday.com reports that the man is seeking the return of the 1,000 yuan he had given her as a reward for her actions. The woman also received more than 300,000 yuan from the public, but rescuers and witnesses at the scene have come forward to say she was lying.
Tap water now in the clear
Tap water was deemed safe yesterday in Songjiang and Jinshan districts after a chemical spill last week, the Oriental Morning Post reports. The discharge of styrene emanated from a leaky valve on a chemical-transport boat at the loading dock of a plant in Jinshan. District water authorities determined the water was safe at a treatment plant after conducting 33 tests at the weekend. However, local residents still complained that the water had a chemical smell.
Building lawsuit falls short
A court in Hangzhou on Friday rejected two apartment owners' requests for compensation from a developer who built a shorter residential building than promised, resulting in the two owners having an undesirable apartment on the top floor rather than three floors below the top, Qianjiang Evening News reports. The developer promised to make the building 16 floors, but it ended up being only 13 stories high. The court rejected the request for a full refund plus costs incurred, saying it was an issue of preference, and not building quality.
Township-level police in Dongyang arrested a 23-year-old man last Friday for posing as an army colonel for more than a week to get free bus rides, free meals and free massages, provincial news portal Zjol.com.cn reports. Police said the suspect wore a tailor-made officer's uniform and obtained a counterfeit licence. He was caught after he became overconfident and went into a county government building to ask for a favour for his friend.