TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- A drunk driver with an astronomical blood alcohol level of 0.97 late last night (Jan. 9) smashed his BMW into a Toyota, killing a Vietnamese immigrant woman inside, reported Apple Daily.
At 11:27 p.m. last night, after a bout of heavy drinking, a 31-year-old man surnamed Shi (施) swerved into the wrong lane and plowed his black BMW into a white Toyota. The force of the collision was so great that the Toyota was sent flying three meters in the air before smashing into a roadside pole, causing the 40-year-old female driver, surnamed Hsu (徐) to sustain fatal injuries.
The Changhua County Fire Department dispatched four units to the scene, including 11 personnel, six fire trucks, and an ambulance. At the site of the collision, firefighters found thick smoke pouring out of the BMW, while the Toyotas was so badly mangled rescuers had to use hydraulic rescue tools to free the driver, Hsu, and a male passenger surnamed Huang (黃) from what was left of the car.
Smoke pouring from BMW. (Image from Changhua Police Department)
Of the two occupants of the Toyota, Hsu had suffered more serious injuries and showed no signs of life. Both Huang and Hsu were immediately rushed to a nearby hospital, where the latter succumbed to her injuries.
Shi, who had fled from his vehicle for fear of it catching fire, was found to be conscious, but had suffered severe injuries, including lacerations on his forehead, cerebral hemorrhage, bilateral lung contusions, right lung pneumohemothorax, fractured ribs, and fractured hands. He was taken to Changhua Christian Hospital, where he is intensive car. His blood alcohol concentration level was found to be 0.97.
Review of footage from a surveillance camera showed that the BMW had crossed the double yellow line and encroached on the Toyota's lane before smashing into it head on. The force of the impact was so intense that the Toyota was sent hurtling three meters in the air, before smashing into a roadside pole, while sparks flew out of the BMW as it continued to skid about 60 more meters.
Mangled remains of Toyota. (Image from Changhua Police Department)
An initial police investigation showed that Hsu had married a Taiwanese man and had immigrated from Vietnam 20 years ago. She was trapped in the driver's seat when the police arrived, had no vital signs, and was declared dead after being rushed to the hospital.
Hsu and her husband reportedly have three daughters in school. Hsu's second-eldest daughter was shaken by the loss of her mother and blamed the drunk driver, "He shouldn't have been drinking and driving! He killed my mother!"
She explained that the male passenger Huang was a shop manager of a supermarket and before going out, her mother said she was going with Huang to transfer some goods. The family continually waited for her return, only to hear the shocking news that she had been in a car accident.
Firefighters rescuing occupants of Toyota. (Image from Changhua Police Department)
Hsu's husband, who is trying to cope with the loss of his wife angrily criticized the driver, "Drunk driving is really too much!"