Japanese mayor mourns victims of road accident

FAMILY TRAGEDY::The Taiwanese family of four were traveling in a rented car when they collided with a truck after skidding on the snow-covered roads

Staff writer, with CNA, HOKKAIDO

Mon, Nov 26, 2012 - Page 3

A Japanese mayor in eastern Hokkaido yesterday mourned the deaths of three Taiwanese tourists, including a Taiwanese government official, who died in a car accident on Friday near his city.

At about 10:30am, Kushiro Mayor Hiroya Ebina visited the funeral parlor where the bodies were being kept.

Ebina said he deeply regretted the accident and hopes the injured survivor will recover soon and that the dead will rest in peace.

Officials from the villages near the accident site also visited the funeral parlor to mourn the deaths of the Taiwanese tourists.

One official said the villages would make a greater effort to warn tourists about the dangers of driving in snowy conditions.

The family of four was traveling in a rented car, which collided with a truck at about 11:15am on Friday. The car driver, Hung Chi-wen (洪啟文), was rushed to hospital with a concussion and internal bleeding, while the other three passengers were pronounced dead on the spot. The truck driver had minor injuries.

Hung was traveling with his wife, Lin Yu-ching (林雨青), his brother Hung Ying-wen (洪穎文) and his mother, Chang Lung (張瓏), who worked in the Ministry of Culture’s Legal Affairs Committee.

A Japanese news report said the tourists were probably on their way to Tsurui from Kushiro in eastern Hokkaido when their car crossed the lane into the path of the oncoming truck, as indicated by the skid marks on the snow-covered road.

As of Saturday, Hung was still in intensive care. His sister went to Hokkaido on Saturday to take care of related affairs. Lin’s family, including her parents and a sister, arrived in Hokkaido yesterday.