HCMC doctor blamed for fatal accident

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Ho Chi Minh City police said Wednesday (October 12) that a doctor who killed two and left a dozen injured after crashing his car into a group of 13 motorbikes at a red light was responsible for the accident.

At around 4:15 p.m. last Friday (October 7), Tran Anh Huy, the 42-year-old doctor of the Children's Hospital 1, drove a four-seater Toyota Altis on Ly Thai To Street in District 10.

Huy crashed into two cars traveling ahead of him in the same direction before driving into a crowd of motorists who had stopped before a red light at the intersection of Ly Thai To and Su Van Hanh.

Huy attempted to drive off and flee the scene but was stopped by passers-by and taken to a nearby police station.

At the scene, 13 motorbikes and two cars were badly damaged. A woman died on the spot, and another woman succumbed to her injuries after being treated at hospital.

The two dead victims were later identified as Nguyen Thi Le Quyen, 43, and Nguyen Thi Lien Chau, 37.

The collision at the stoplight threw one motorbike into the intersection, where it burst into flames, leaving a few people burned and injured.

The 12 injured victims suffered from multiple injuries and burns. Most of them have recovered and have been released from hospital.

According to eyewitnesses, Huy was speeding at the time of the accident. Meanwhile,

Huy blamed "technical errors" for the accident.

Huy told the police he had stopped the car at the curb while waiting for his wife when he smelled something burned in the car.

He said the car then "automatically" accelerated and crashed into the two cars and 13 motorbikes. He said he could not stop the car as its brakes failed.

On Wednesday, Senior Lieutenant-Colonel Truong Van Hoa of the HCMC Police Department said inspections had showed there was nothing wrong with the car.

Inspectors said the car's brakes were fine and that its engine operated normally. 

"The accident may be totally Huy's fault," Senior Lieutenant-Colonel Hoa said.

According to investigators, Huy bought the car in 2008 and has been driving it since 2009. The car underwent maintenance one week before the accident.

Huy is still in police custody as the investigation continues.

According to the HCMC Traffic Safety Committee, 639 people died and 343 others were injured in 750 traffic accidents in the city between January and September.

In comparison to the same period last year, the number of deaths increased by 14. In September alone, when the city launched "Traffic Safety Month," the number of deaths and injuries saw no dramatic decrease, with 76 deaths and 25 injuries.

According to police, most of the accidents were caused by the limited awareness of traffic safety rules, and most especially by drunk drivers.

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