Seven injured as Hong Kong taxi mounts pavement and ploughs into crowd at Causeway Bay

CCTV footage of the incident shows the driver getting out to check the condition of his vehicle before tending to the injured

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 12 November, 2016, 7:24pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 12 November, 2016, 11:27pm

A six-year-old child and an 89-year-old person were among at least seven people injured when a taxi ploughed into a crowd after mounting a pavement in Causeway Bay on Saturday.

The incident happened at about 10.30am outside the Sogo department store. The area was crowded, as pedestrians waited to cross the road and customers from Sogo’s half-year sale streamed in and out of the store.

At least seven people – four females and three males aged six to 89 – were injured in the accident.

The 71-year-old driver, surnamed Lau, was arrested for dangerous driving causing grievous bodily harm. He passed the breathalyser test.

Watch: CCTV footage of the accident

Lau’s vehicle was eastbound along Hennessy Road when – according to surveillance video that captured the incident – it seemingly lost control and mounted the pavement, scattering panicked crowds and hitting some people, before halting.

The unfortunate few pedestrians were knocked over like bowling pins, but the first thing the driver did after getting out of his taxi was to check the condition of his car, before approaching one of the injured.

The left side of the vehicle sustained light damage, while its windscreen was slightly cracked.

“Someone ran onto the road suddenly and I could not stop my car immediately,” Lau told Cable TV, adding that he had passengers in his car when the crash happened.

Witnesses said they heard a loud bang before seeing the taxi mounting the pavement.

Four of the injured were conscious when sent to Ruttonjee Hospital in Wan Chai for treatment.

As of Saturday afternoon, three patients were discharged and one was in a stable condition. Another three people sought treatment themselves.

Judging from the video, mechanical expert and traffic accident consultant Lo Kok-keung estimated the speed of the taxi to be around 42km/h at the moment it hit the crowd.

“If the car had not come to a stop and continued on at this speed, more people would have been severely injured,” Lo said.