Accidents and personal safety in Hong Kong

‘Saved by the handrail, I cheated death’: survivor recounts horror Hong Kong coach crash

  • Airport ground staff member Ye Yugang says he did not notice anything abnormal about the trip before coach ploughed into taxi, killing five
PUBLISHED : Sunday, 02 December, 2018, 8:33am
UPDATED : Sunday, 02 December, 2018, 12:34pm

Ye Yugang could have died in Friday’s Hong Kong coach crash that claimed the lives of five people, but believes he was saved by a simple handrail.

He forgot to wear his seat belt after boarding the vehicle early that morning. When violently jolted from his seat by the impact of the coach ploughing into a taxi, he was left with nothing but a small bar to cling to for dear life as the bus careened out of control.

“I tried my best not to get myself thrown out of the bus. I only thought about staying alive,” said Ye, a 25-year-old employee of Hong Kong Airport Services.

He was among 32 people injured in the horror crash on Cheung Tsing Highway in Tsing Yi just before 5am.

The coach was carrying 36 employees from five companies providing services for Hong Kong International Airport.

Three coach passengers were thrown out by the impact and died at the scene. The taxi driver and another coach passenger were certified dead upon arrival at hospital.

On Saturday, five of the injured – four men and one woman – were still receiving treatment at different hospitals. Fok Chi-sum, the 62-year-old coach driver, was in a critical condition at Princess Margaret Hospital in Kwai Chung.

Coach driver in Hong Kong crash that claimed five lives had been suspended for accident earlier this year

Lying in a bed at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Yau Ma Tei, Ye said he felt lucky to be alive after escaping with bone fractures in three toes on his right foot.

“I cheated death,” he said.

He was scheduled to undergo surgery on Sunday.

Ye had been at his current workplace for about three months. On Friday he boarded the coach at Sau Mau Ping in East Kowloon. He fell asleep on the coach and did not notice anything abnormal about the trip.

Coach driver in crash that left five dead and 32 injured had been working 12-hour shifts, Hong Kong police say

On other days, if not on the early morning shift, Ye would take the Airport Express train or other buses.

When asked whether he would avoid taking the same coach to work in future, he replied: “I believe the company will review after such an accident.”