Hong Kong man found dead on pavement after ambulance missed him

A passer-by noticed him slumped outside a shop about 600 metres away from where emergency services had looked for him over two hours earlier

PUBLISHED : Friday, 16 June, 2017, 8:05pm
UPDATED : Friday, 16 June, 2017, 9:42pm

A 65-year-old man was found dead on a pavement in Portland Street, Mong Kok, on Friday morning, about 2½ hours after an ambulance he requested failed to find him and left.

Lai Chi-chiu was alone when he made a 999 emergency call with his mobile phone at about 6am complaining of feeling dizzy and asking for an ambulance, according to a source with knowledge of the case.

The call was transferred to the fire department’s ambulance control centre, which sent an ambulance to find him. It is understood the control centre was told he was at the junction of Prince Edward Road West and Portland Street.

The ambulance searched for about 15 minutes but failed to find him and then it left
A source with knowledge of the case

“An initial investigation showed an ambulance failed to find him at that location and two phone calls were made to find him but no one answered,” the source said. “The ambulance searched for about 15 minutes but failed to find him and then it left.”

At about 8.30am, Lai was found unconscious by a woman passer-by outside a shop on the pavement in Portland Street near the junction with Argyle Street – about 600 metres away from the junction of Prince Edward Road West and Portland Street.

Police and paramedics were alerted after the woman’s call and Lai was certified dead at the scene.

The source said it was possible Lai gave the wrong address to the control centre or moved before the ambulance arrived.

A police spokesman said their initial inquiries revealed nothing suspicious and an autopsy would be carried out.

A Fire Services Department spokesman said a call was received at 6.02am. An ambulance was sent to the scene but failed to find anyone and it left at 6.20am. Another call was received at 8.35am and the ambulance arrived at 8.39am.

It is understood Lai lived with his wife in Park Avenue in Hoi Wang Road, Mong Kok. He had left home at daybreak, telling his wife he was going to mainland China.