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October 28, 2009

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8 hurt as car plows into crowd

EIGHT people were hurt last night when a car knocked down a bicycle and a moped and then crashed into pedestrians on a crowded sidewalk in front of a bank in Shanghai's Hongkou District.

The injured suffered broken bones and bruises and were in stable condition at two hospitals near the crash site, Hongkou District police said.

"I have never seen such a scary scene," said Zhou Debao, who witnessed injuries to two relatives.

Police took the driver away for investigation. Though witnesses said they noticed the smell of alcohol near the vehicle, police said the driver passed a breath test at the scene.

Officers said he would be given a more precise blood-alcohol test later.

The cause of the mishap was still under investigation last night. The car first struck the rear of two vehicles on Quyang Road at about 6:50pm then veered to the left and hit the two-wheelers. A woman and boy who were on the moped and a man riding the bike were knocked to the ground, witnesses said.

The car continued for about 20 meters toward the sidewalk on Yutian Road where it hit five pedestrians and stopped against a concrete abutment guarding a greenery area, witnesses said.

Zhou, 71, said he tried to comfort his two-year-old grandson, who suffered a scratch to his face.

"I was so scared that I didn't even notice the boy's mother was also hit," Zhou said.

Zhou's daughter-in-law, surnamed Zhang, was carried out with both legs broken after a crowd of bystanders lifted the car. The other victims were also pulled out from under the car, said Zhou Zijun who helped lift the vehicle.

"I smelled alcohol as I opened the car door," he said. "The driver just looked straight ahead; his face looked pale."

The driver and a woman sitting next to him were not injured.

"The driver didn't slow down the whole time," said Zhou Debao.


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