Couple die in high-speed crash as police probe New Territories illegal road race theory
Police investigating if two cars were in illegal race when driver lost control and slammed into a tree killing businessman and girlfriend
A motorist and his female passenger died after their car slammed into a tree at high speed in Tai Po on Tuesday.
Police are investigating whether the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution sports car was involved in an illegal car race in Bride’s Pool Road at the time of the crash.
Acting chief inspector Kiang Kwok-ming of New Territories North traffic unit said police were investigating all angles and that illegal street racing was one of the possibilities.
“At this stage, there is no evidence to show there was an illegal race,” he said.
But he confirmed that in the past police had received complaints of road racing taking place on the road that has a speed limit of 50km/h.
About 200 metres from the site of the accident, a Honda Civic Type R ran out of control and hit a kerb at the same time. Its 21-year-old driver suffered minor injuries.
According to a veteran police officer, Bride’s Pool Road is one of the hot spots for illegal car racing in the city and the Honda Civic Type R and Mitsubishi Evolution models are among popular cars used by young racers.
He said car races were generally impromptu rather than organised events. “It occurs when two motorists meet and stare at each other. They first overtake each other and then race,” he said.
The red Evolution driven by Lo Kin-tang, 28, was travelling along Bride’s Pool Road on Tuesday heading towards Luk Keng when the accident happened shortly after 2am.
When approaching a Tai Mei Tuk petrol station, it careered out of control on a right bend, drove off the road and then slammed into a tree.
The car body was twisted and vehicle parts including its bumper broke off.
Lo and his female passenger, 28, were trapped in the wreckage and had to be freed by firefighters. Both had lost consciousness by this point, according to police.
The woman was declared dead in Alice Ho Miu Ling Nethersole Hospital at 3.35am and Lo died in Prince of Wales Hospital at 4.27am.
The Evolution left behind two trails of tyre marks stretching 64 metres and 71 metres on the road. Police believe they were skid marks.
Kiang said the site was not a known black spot for car accidents.
He said the left side of the car body had slammed into the tree with a powerful impact.
He said police were investigating the speed of the car and looking into whether there was a mechanical fault or whether it was illegally modified to enhance its performance.
The wreckage was towed to a government vehicle plant in Tuen Mun for further examination.
Police appealed for anyone with information to call 3661 3800.
Currently, police are on high alert against illegal road racers timed to coincide with next month’s Macau Grand Prix.
Complaints of road racing fell 17 per cent to 173 in the first nine months of this year, down from 203 in the same period last year.