Date
11 December 2017
Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying said some ambulances and fire trucks lost a lot of time looking for detours. Photo: RTHK
Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying said some ambulances and fire trucks lost a lot of time looking for detours. Photo: RTHK

Protesters urged to make way for emergency vehicles

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying urged protesters to yield some roads for first-aid vehicles, while organizers of the Occupy Central movement said they would try not to hamper emergency rescue efforts.

“The Occupy Central campaign has affected some first-aid services in some areas, according to information obtained by the government in last few days. Some of those injured and who were ill failed to be hospitalized in a timely manner,” Ming Pao Daily quoted Leung as saying.

Police have urged protesters to allow some roads to remain open to vehicular traffic, but to no avail, he said, adding that some ambulances and fire trucks on emergency call lost a lot of time looking for detours.

Leung also urged citizens staying on the street to take care of themselves, and take into account of other people’s needs and rights. “Many bus lines have stopped operation so far, and those affected have shown their tolerance by keeping silent,” he said.

But Chan Sze-kei, chairman of the Hong Kong Fire Services Department Ambulancemen’s Union, said he has no confirmed cases of rescue efforts having been affected by the protests, RTHK reported.

He said some people told him about such cases being reported on social media, although it was hard to verify the reports.

Chan agreed that if an ambulance looking for a detour lost even just one or two minutes, that could affect patients, the report said.

Chan Kin-man, one of the Occupy Central organizers, said many of the protesters were maintaining order in the occupied streets as police officers were not around.

“We hope the protesters would continue to keep order. If there’s someone make chaos, please do not follow them,” he said.

Eason Chung Yiu-wa, secretary general of the Federation of Students, urged the government not to stir up tensions among citizens.  He said his group would ask protest organizers on the scene to reserve passage for emergency vehicles.

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JZ/JP/CG

Freelance journalist

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