Tue, Oct 14, 2008 - Page 4 News List

Community Compass: Pigeon post

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

VIEW THIS PAGE English-speaking drivers to hit Taipei County’s streets

Taxis with English-speaking drivers are expected to hit the streets of Taipei County soon as part of the county government’s efforts to build a more foreigner-friendly environment in the local transportation network, a county official said last week. The exact date would be announced later, the official said. Under the program, the Taipei County Government will offer free English conversation courses to taxi drivers through virtual reality learning and those who qualify will be certified and recruited into the English-speaking service network. In the future, foreigners will be able to call an English-language taxi service through the county government’s certification system, the official said.

Indonesian facing trial for alleged poisoning

The Taipei Prosecutors Office indicted an Indonesian domestic worker on Wednesday on charges of causing injury, after she allegedly poisoned the family of her employer with mercury. Prosecutors said the worker, known by the name Sukini, is being held at a detention center in Hsinchu pending trial. The alleged victims — a man surnamed Chang, his wife and their two children — are recovering after being treated in hospital and having heavy metal residues removed from their bodies, prosecutors said. The prosecutors said Sukini allegedly broke several thermometers and put the mercury into the family’s food. Chang and his wife later developed symptoms that included hair loss, mouth ulcers and impairment of vision, all indicative of mercury poisoning. The two children in the family, aged three and five, were constantly falling because they lacked physical coordination, the prosecutors said. It was found that the mercury concentration in their bodies was 10.42 times the normal level in the adults and 23.33 times the normal level in the children. After Sukini ran away, Chang’s wife found several broken thermometers in the house, which led her to suspect that the family had been poisoned, prosecutors said.

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