Tue, Dec 03, 2013 - Page 3 News List

Man skates through highway tunnel after arguing with wife

By Chiang Chih-hsiung, Wang Yang-yu and Jason Pan  /  Staff reporters, with staff writer

Drivers traveling through the busy Hsuehshan Tunnel on Taiwan National Highway No. 5 on Saturday evening were surprised to see at a bizarre scene: a man roller-skating on the tunnel’s emergency escape path.

When police eventually stopped the skater, they were surprised to discover that he was 44-year-old Yang Chia-hsiang (楊嘉祥), a roller-skating coach who has represented Taiwan at international tournaments in roller figure, roller hockey and speed skating competitions.

Yang was quoted by the police as saying that he and his wife were returning to Taipei from Yilan County when they got into an argument at about 9:30pm while driving through the tunnel.

Yang got out of the car at the highway’s 27.2km mark, and started roller-skating on the emergency path toward Taipei.

The highway traffic police caught up with him inside the tunnel at the 25.3km mark, after Yang had already skated for 13 minutes over a distance of 1.9km.

Yang was roller-skating under the influence of alcohol, and a Breathalyzer test showed he was over the legal limit for driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.73mg per liter, police said.

However, the police said Yang had not committed an offense against public safety, as he was not roller-skating in the car lanes and had not caused any accidents.

Yang was fined for violating the Act Governing Punishments for Violations of Road Traffic Regulations (道路交通管理處罰條例).

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