Brawl breaks out over legroom on Taipei MRT

Outer thighs of fury: Man hospitalized after fistfight ensues over legroom on Taipei MRT

(Taipei Police Department photo)

(Taipei Police Department photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- A man was hospitalized after a fistfight broke out on the Taipei MRT on Thursday (July 18) over legroom.

A 53-year-old man surnamed Shih (施) and a 42-year-old man surnamed Tseng (曾) got into an argument over legroom on the Taipei MRT on Thursday morning, reported Liberty Times. The argument soon resulted in a fistfight, with the younger Tseng sustaining injuries that required medical treatment.

At around 8 a.m. on Thursday morning, Shih and Tseng both boarded the Yongning Station on the MRT Blue line and happened to sit next to each other. Tseng sat with his legs spread wide apart and encroaching on Shih's space.

Irritated, Shih spread his legs apart as well and pressed his outer leg against Tseng's. Tseng then retaliated by pressing his leg back with even greater force.

An argument then ensued, which soon escalated to shouting. An alarmed passenger contacted the conductor via the emergency intercom system and also called the police.

Meanwhile, Shih and Tseng then began fighting each other. Although Shih was over ten years older than Tseng, he quickly put the younger man in a headlock with his left hand and started punching his head with his right fist, according to ETtoday.

Witnesses described the fight as coming straight out of a Donnie Yen "Yip Man" movie. Tseng soon began to bleed from the wounds inflicted by Shih.

According to local media reports, the train stopped at Haishan Station where police arrived on the scene. Tseng was rushed to the Far Eastern Memorial Hospital, where he received several stitches for wounds to his head, but his wounds were not considered life-threatening.

When questioned by police, Shih said he felt his rights and interests as a passenger had been violated. He admitted that he had punched Tseng, but he claimed that Tseng had also taken a swing at him.

Police are continuing to investigate the case and are treating the incident as a case of assault (傷害罪).