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December 4, 2013

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US teacher’s helping hand for accident victim

AN American teacher from an international school stood out among a crowd of onlookers to help an injured man lying on the road on Monday night.

A man surnamed Wei was riding his scooter along Hongquan Road in Minhang District about 7:38pm when he hit a car door which opened suddenly.

He was flung high by the impact and lay sprawling on the roadside in pain.

Jill Warner, a 39-year-old teacher at Shanghai United International School, tried to help Wei, who was writhing in pain.

“I cannot speak Chinese, but I could tell that some people were telling me not to get involved and go away,” Warner told Shanghai Daily. “But I told them I could help.”

Warner had not received any medical training before. With the help of a passer-by who could speak English, she asked Wei about his injury, and made sure an ambulance was called. Warner kneeled down and held Wei’s left hand — his right arm was likely fractured — to offer comfort and encouragement.

Wei was taken away by an ambulance about 8:08pm.

He was riding a scooter on the bicycle lane which was parked with many cars as there are lot of restaurants nearby. The car in this case belonged to a South Korean surnamed Choi, according to Youth Daily.

Choi also parked his car on the bicycle lane and as he opened the door to get off, Wei hit it.

Wei was driving very fast, Choi said. Police said drivers who open the car door on a bicycle lane should take full responsibility.

Warner, who hails from Seattle, has been in Shanghai for three years. She teaches mathematics, English, science and history to first grade students.

She said she encountered a similar incident just eight days ago when she saw a man lying at the entrance of Hongqiao Road Metro station, also a victim of motorbike-car accident.

She did the same thing by holding his hand and waited until an ambulance arrived.

“I’m always willing to help, and I hoped it helped to ease their pain a bit,” Warner said.

Warner knew of incidences where people who offered to help accident victims were in turn accused of being responsible for the accident.

“It is very discouraging. There were also similar cases back in the US,” Warner said. But she insisted that she would still put out her hand to anyone who may need help on the streets.

“While the risk of getting falsely accused is scary, it’s a risk that I’m willing to take. So many people have thanked me for what I did. When I saw the man lying there in pain, I didn’t even think about the risk. I just wanted to help comfort him, rather than just stand around and stare, like I would have wanted someone to comfort me had it been me on the ground.

“I hope that I can inspire others to help out and take action when someone else needs it. So I would not hesitate to help out if it happened again.”



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