plunged off a bridge and into the Yangtze River following a fight between the driver and an angry passenger who had missed her stop. The tragedy has sparked concern across China and highlighted the frightening frequency of driver-passenger clashes, which sometimes seem to happen every other day.ast week, a bus carrying 15 people in Chongqing
On Sunday in the Hunan city of Xiangtan, an elderly man riding a public bus missed his stop. After the driver refused to pull over, the man is seen on surveillance video suddenly grabbing the wheel and turning it to the right.
Fortunately, the driver reacts by swatting the man in the face and immediately stopping the vehicle.
Two days earlier, in the Jiangxi city of Xinyu, a 65-year-old man also grabbed the steering wheel of a public bus after missing his stop. The female driver quickly stopped the vehicle and called the police, crying afterward when thinking about what happened in Chongqing.
In security footage from inside the Chongqing bus before it crashed last Sunday, a 48-year-old female passenger surnamed Liu is seen arguing with the driver, surnamed Ran, after having missed her stop, smacking him in the head with her cell phone as they cross over a bridge. Ran responds with a blow of his own and then grapples with the woman briefly before suddenly sharply turning the wheel to the left, causing the bus to crash into oncoming traffic, smash through a wall, and fall into the Yangtze River as passengers scream in terror.
While much of the online rage has been directed at the female passenger, many Chinese netizens have also questioned the actions of the driver, pointing out that he doesn’t appear to “lose control of the vehicle,” as the police account of the incident describes, but instead seems to deliberately turn the wheel sharply to the left and doesn’t appear to try to brake or avoid the crash. Some have called the driver “suicidal.”
Others have argued that he was simply tired of the frequent bullying he had to put up with from passengers and wanted to teach the woman a lesson, badly miscalculating the danger.