While crossing a street in Ho Chi Minh City’s downtown area on Monday afternoon, a Japanese female lecturer fell to the ground and was run over by a bus. She died on the spot.
The victim was Miyamoto Michiko, 50, a Japanese tutor who used to teach at the Block C of the Ho Chi Minh City University of Social Sciences and Humanities, according to Nguoi Lao Dong Newspaper.
The newspaper also quoted Nguyễn Thị Thu Hương, an official from the Oriental Studies Faculty, as confirming that Miyamoto was not an official lecturer of the faculty.
At about 3:30 pm on September 30, Miyamoto got off a bus at the Ben Thanh Bus Station on Pham Ngu Lao Street, near the Quach Thi Trang Roundabout in District 1. She had taken the bus after leaving the school.
She was then aided by a female student to cross the street to take another bus to go home on Lam Van Ben Street in District 7.
Unluckily, the lecturer suddenly fell to the ground while crossing the street. At this moment, a bus came and ran over her, killing her on the scene.
A source said the teacher had suffered bone degeneration in her leg, so she faced difficulties in walking and usually used buses for daily travel.
Police are investigating the accident.
After the accident occurred, many readers have sent their feedback to Tuoi Tre, expressing their concerns about risk of danger while travelling on streets in large cities like HCM City.
A reader, Nguyen Xuan Ly, wrote, “I like walking very much, but whenever I have to cross a street (at the crossing place for passengers), I am very nervous, since I usually am haunted by an obsession that vehicles travelling on the street can rush into me at any time.”
Another reader, Dien Ba Quang, said the Japanese teachers had crossed the street through the crossing path intended for pedestrians.
According to the Road Traffic Law, drivers of all vehicles must reduce speeds, carefully watch when they approach a crossing path, and give way to pedestrians who are walking on the path, the reader wrote.
“Nowadays walking on urban areas is more dangerous than traveling on a motorbike. Most vehicles do not give way to pedestrians,” Quang added.
With the same view, Nguyen Phu Sang wrote, “Crossing streets is a difficult thing in Vietnam, although people walking on paths for pedestrians, because most vehicles do not give way to walkers. They keep running fast and blow the horn loudly as a way to ask everyone to avoid them.”
Another reader, Mai Tung, said, “I go by the Ben Thanh Market everyday and find the crossing path for pedestrians there very unreasonable, since walkers have to cross the Quach Thi Trang Roundabout to get to the market or the bus station.
"Even locals and healthy people are afraid of crossing the roundabout as most buses run as fast as they can to pick up passengers, a practice that pose dangers to other vehicles and people on streets. I have seen an old photograph showing a flyover in this area a long time ago. Why don’t we build such a flyover there now. Such a flyover will help streamline the traffic and protect pedestrians," Tung said.
“This bus driver was very careless. I think he should be penalized strictly. Buses in cities usually travel randomly”.
Another reader, Quoc Anh, lamented that “a number of bus and taxi drivers usually think nothing of the lives of pedestrians and violate traffic rules, such as speeding and driving on the wrong lane. I want to send my deepest condolences to the family of the victim.”