Seven injured after double-decker bus hits false ceiling on busy Hong Kong street

South-bound Kowloon Motor Bus on route 2B was said to have hit the false ceiling as it approached a bus stop

PUBLISHED : Monday, 23 January, 2017, 7:53pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 24 January, 2017, 11:50am

Seven people were injured by a false ceiling that fell after it was hit by a double-decker bus in Cheung Sha Wan yesterday.

The south-bound Kowloon Motor Bus on route 2B was said to have hit the false ceiling, measuring six metres by four metres, on the first floor of a building on Castle Peak Road, near Fat Tseung Street, at about 6.40pm yesterday as it approached a bus stop.

As the structure carrying four spotlights fell, it hit bus stop railings first, which may have prevented more serious injuries.

All the injured pedestrians – a man and six women aged between 25 and 58 – were conscious as they were taken to Caritas Medical Centre in Cheung Sha Wan, Princess Margaret Hospital in Lai King and Kwong Wah Hospital in Yau Ma Tei.

Most of them suffered head injuries, while some had wounds on their knees and waist area. Three of them were in a serious condition, another three were stable and the state of the last was unknown.

A witness surnamed Wong, in her 50s, who lives in the nearby Un Chau Estate, said she was going into a bakery next to the shoe shop, where the false ceiling was, when the accident happened. As she was about the enter the shop, there was a very loud bang which she said sounded like thunder.

“I turned my head and found it was a big canopy collapsing just a few steps away from me ... I was so scared and did not know what to do, except scream,” she said.

She saw blood on some people’s heads, and several men came out to help lift and move the canopy a bit. She added: “Fortunately, there were not too many people queuing at the bus stop.”

A shop assistant at a nearby dispensary, surnamed Lau, said the shoe shop had been operating for more than 30 years, and added that more people might have been injured if the collapse happened during peak hours.

According to employees at nearby shops, false ceilings used to be erected under the concrete canopies of many of the stores there, but most were removed several years ago. The Buildings Department said after an examination that the building in question was safe and that it had yet to find out whether the wooden structure was legally built.

Police have cordoned a section of the road for investigation.

A Kowloon Motor Bus spokesman did not disclose any details on the 50-year-old bus driver or how long he had been into his shift when the incident happened, saying that the case was under investigation.