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1 dead, 3 injured in multi-vehicle pileup caused by Taipower cable fall

12/02/2023 05:34 PM
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Photo courtesy of the police Dec. 2, 2023
Photo courtesy of the police Dec. 2, 2023

Taipei, Dec. 2 (CNA) A multi-vehicle pile-up resulting from a cable falling during electrical work carried out by state-owned Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower) left one person dead and three others injured on the Tongxiao section of Freeway No. 3 on Saturday, according to the Miaoli County Fire Bureau.

The fire bureau said it received a report around 10 a.m. that seven vehicles -- one tour bus, a semi-trailer, and five passenger cars -- were involved in the accident after a cable fell onto the freeway, which caused one car to tip over and the subsequent multi-vehicle pileup.

The person who died was pronounced dead at the hospital she was rushed to, the bureau said, adding that at the scene of the accident, she had no vital signs.

The bureau added that the injured people sustained fractures, had numbing sensations and were in pain.

A preliminary investigation by the National Highway Police Bureau reported that a long cable fell from a Taipower electricity transmission project due to worker negligence.

The cable first crashed into a car traveling southbound which led to that car hitting the highway fence. A semi-trailer traveling northbound was then struck by the cable which caused the car initially struck by the cable to hooked up again and the ensuing pileup, as the other five vehicles were unable to avoid the car.

Highway police said the accident caused traffic to be backed up on the freeway for around two kilometers, but that it was cleared in about one hour.

Highway police said the electricity transmission project was carried out by a contractor commissioned by Taipower, and that those responsible for the accident would be subject to the full force of the law.

In response, Taipower announced the suspension of the project and said it had set up a task force to determine what had happened and reduce the risk of such an incident happening again in the future.

(By Lu Kang-chun and Frances Huang)

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