A company guard in Hanoi was arrested pending charges after driving into a crowd of workers engaged in wildcat strike Thursday, killing at least one of them.
Around 300 workers, most of them female, had gathered at the front gate of Giai Duc Special Materials Company, making it impossible for two 1.5-ton trucks to come in and take materials from the company.
Le Tuan Minh, chief guard of the company, reportedly jumped into one of the trucks and drove at high speed to the gate, badly injuring 26-year-old Nguyen Thi Lieu, 26, who died while being taken to the hospital.
Six other workers were severely injured, including a woman who was seven months pregnant. Another woman, five months pregnant, suffered slight injuries.
Hoang Thi Thong, a worker participating in the strike, told VnExpress that "The truck drove straight into the workers, going over two people."
Another worker said they only heard one horn before seeing the truck coming straight at them. "We pushed each other to run, some of us were thrown away and some were run over," the worker was cited by the Saigon Tiep Thi as saying.
Minh said he got the order from a company official named Dinh Thi Ai, saying that he had to bring the trucks in "by any means," the Saigon Tiep Thi reported. The guard did not have a drivers license.
The truck was stopped more than ten meters from where the workers were striking.
Minh was beaten up severely by the workers. He escaped after he was hospitalized, but was later found and taken to the local police office.
The workers of Giai Duc, a Taiwan-invested company producing motorbike parts, have many times asked for better salaries, improved quality of meals provided by the company, and travel allowances. They'd never received a response from the company.
On Wednesday, the company leaders were informed of the strike, but none showed up on Thursday morning.
After the accident, Nguyen Thi Huong, chairwoman of the company's labor union, read out a pay rise decision.