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Compensation deal reached for drag race victim

A DRAG race driver who killed a pedestrian in downtown Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang Province, has agreed to pay 1.13 million yuan (US$165,580.03) in compensation to the victim's family, the Xinmin Weekly reported.

The compensation includes 300,000 yuan for mental suffering, the victim's lawyer Wei Yongqiang told the magazine.

Hu Bin, 20, a university student, driving a speeding Mitsubishi sports car, hit Tan Zhuo, 25, on a pedestrian crossing on the evening of May 7. Tan flew five meters into the air before he hit the ground and died.

The speed of the car has been estimated to have been between 84.1 and 101.2 kilometers per hour when the accident happened, according to a forensic report published by the police. The speeding car had been modified to go faster.

Hu has been arrested on vehicular manslaughter charges, and may face up to seven years in jail if convicted.

Public outrage was sparked by a photograph in a local newspaper showing Hu's friends apparently joking with each other after the accident.

Tan's death evoked a great deal of pity. Tan, a native of Linxiang, central China's Hunan Province, had been working in Hangzhou after graduating from a local university.

More than 1,000 local people went to the funeral on May10 to offer sympathy to the youth's family.

Tan's body was cremated on Monday.

The 1.13-million-yuan compensation is more significant as a warning against dangerous driving than any financial penalty, Tan Zhuo's father, Tan Yue, told the Xinmin Weekly.

He hoped drivers would care more about pedestrians' safety.

The father described the tragedy as a bolt out of the blue to the family.

The parents, who had both been laid off from state-owned companies in Linxiang, had picked up odd jobs to support their son's education, he said.

Tan Zhuo decided to go to the prestigious Zhejiang University because he liked the city of Hangzhou so much, he said. He had a good job and was preparing to get married, he said.

"He used to be our only hope. But that is lost now," the father said.

Tan Yue said he felt it hard to accept the fact that his son has passed away.


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