After the tragedy of Yue Yue, the Chinese trucker who hit a boy... then ran over him again to be sure he'd died 'because it was cheaper than paying the hospital bills'
- Tragedy comes just a week after two-year-old was knocked down by two vehicles on a busy market street and ignored by 18 passers-by
A lorry driver ran over a five-year-old boy – and then reversed over him to make sure he was dead in an apparent attempt to avoid footing hospital bills for the child.
The sickening incident happened in Luzhou, western China, when driver Ao Yong hit Xiong Maoke as he left home to walk to school.
Witness Zhang Shifen said: ‘I saw the truck move back a little and then move forward again. Xiong became wrapped up in the wheel and the truck continued forward another ten yards.’
The tragedy comes just a week after two-year-old Yue Yue was knocked down by two vehicles on a busy market street. The child was ignored by 18 passers-by before someone came to her aid. She died in hospital a few days later.
Fatal: Xiong Maoke's mother sits beside the truck that killed her five-year-old son. The image of the child's body has been pixelated by MailOnline
Sickening: The truck that killed Xiong as he was walked home to school in Luzhou, western China
In this latest incident passers-by said the lorry driver jumped from his cab after hitting the boy. They claimed Yong then asked: ‘How much shall I pay?’
Police said Yong, a 35-year-old lorry driver from Luxian, argued with the boy’s family about the size of the damages for seven hours.
After the latest incident, Yong denied reversing over the boy to kill him. Last night, police and government staff insisted Xiong died on impact.
Their investigation ruled that Yong was the first person to call the police after his truck hit the boy in the village of Yunfeng, in Luzhou, Sichuan province.
They said his body was not removed immediately because angry villagers were demanding instant compensation from the driver.
In heartrending scenes, the boy's mother sat shocked next to the covered body of her five-year-old son.
A string of such horrific cases have led to soul-searching in China, where the economic boom has been blamed for fuelling materialism at the cost of compassion.
Handing over compensation if an accident victim dies is seen by many Chinese as cheaper than paying for lengthy hospital treatment. The Communist regime does not provide free healthcare for its 1.3billion citizens.
Ignored: In a similar incident the previous week, Yue Yue was left with horrific brain injuries and never recovered
The fear of high medical bills is also thought to be behind a second accident in China in which toddler Yue Yue was knocked down by two vehicles on a busy market street.
The gruesome ordeal, captured by security cameras, showed the bleeding child was ignored by 18 passers-by before she was picked up by a scrap picker and given to her mother, who rushed to the street looking for her.
A week after the accident, she died in hospital.
Two drivers suspected of running over the Chinese toddler were arrested on Sunday.
The Beijing News and other outlets reported that police in the city of Foshan concluded their initial investigation and ordered the two men formally arrested, a step that almost always leads to a trial.