A girl died beside Edith Hui. She says Hong Kong needs tougher penalties It all happened in an instant. A sports utility vehicle ran a red light, collided with a taxi and swerved onto a safety island where several pedestrians stood, knocking them down like bowling pins. Edith Hui, a shipping clerk who had just finished work, was about to cross Hing Fat Street when the car sped towards her. The car turned to avoid hitting her, but instead crashed into a railing and the five-year-old girl standing next to her. It has been two years since the accident in Causeway Bay, but Ms Hui can still recall the girl's crushed skull on the ground, with brain, muscles and blood splattered around her. 'The mother and her daughter were standing next to me,' she says. 'The first thing she [the mother] said was, 'Please lend me your phone! Please lend me your phone! I have to call my husband. My daughter is bleeding a lot.' Then I looked and realised that a child was laying next to me.' Two people were killed in the accident, and six others injured. Ms Hui escaped with minor scratches on her hand, but was left with psychological scars for life. Memories of the girl and the mother return whenever she finds herself on a safety island. She has avoided the junction in Causeway Bay for half a year and needed her co-worker to escort her home for a while. But what pains her most is that drivers still run red lights at that junction. 'When I cross the street to go home every day, I worry whether there will be a car coming from nowhere,' she said. The crash made her realise 'that traffic accidents do not only happen on television; this could happen to me, too. Even though I was fortunate this time and only suffered some scratches, the next time it could be me who ends up dead.' Ms Hui is one traffic accident victim who has come forward to speak out in support of tougher penalties for red-light jumpers. Others are either involved in civil lawsuits and cannot speak publicly or do not want to recall the experience. The call to increase the penalty to eight demerit points started after a North Point accident last October that left two dead and 18 injured. The two minibuses involved had allegedly jumped a red light before crashing into a taxi on King's Road. The proposal has been strongly opposed by professional drivers who insist that the penalty should remain at three demerit points. Transport officials have backed down to a five-point proposal, but whether that will be approved by lawmakers remains unclear until their meeting at the transport panel tomorrow. Ms Hui cannot understand the opposition. 'They said a tougher penalty would give them a lot of stress. I think they are selfish. People who run red lights are the ones who cause stress to pedestrians.'