The Canadian tourist involved in a fatal accident at the Great Wall of China earlier this month has apologized to the victim’s family and agreed to pay 600,000 yuan in compensation.
The 38-year-old Canadian woman, identified as Fortin, bumped into 73-year-old Cui Hongfang on a steep section of the wall on April 8. The collision knocked Cui over, causing her to fall down the stairs and hit her head, ultimately resulting in the elderly woman’s death.
According to Sohu News, Cui’s son said his family and Fortin reached an agreement through court mediation last week after Cui’s family filed a civil action lawsuit in a Beijing court. Cui’s son added that Fortin has accepted legal responsibility for the accident and apologized. “She spoke a few sentences in English, and we have accepted her apology,” he said.
After investigation, police declared Cui’s death to be an accident and did not seek criminal charges against Fortin. Afterwards, outraged family members went to the hotel where Fortin was staying to try and prevent her from leaving back to Canada before the family could file a civil case.
CCTV reports that Cui’s family has held a cremation ceremony in Beijing and will bring her ashes back to Heilongjiang to bury in their hometown.
In a separate incident on the Great Wall this month, a Chinese woman visiting the Badaling section with a tour group suddenly fell down, was knocked unconscious and suffocated to death. Her son blamed his mother’s death on the inaction of fellow tourists: “If only someone at the scene had helped her, she wouldn’t have died. There were so many people at the scene that day, why couldn’t one of them have turned her over!”
For comparison: In January, the parents of a wrongly executed teenager received 2 million yuan in compensation only 18 years after their son was killed; also in January, families of 36 victims killed in the New Year’s Eve stampede on the Bund each received 800,000RMB in compensation; and in March, a Gansu villager received 500,000RMB in compensation after being attacked by a wild panda.
by Alex Linder
[Images via CCTV]