Outrage over blocked fire-engine

2012-02-22 12:31

BEIJING, China - A video showing car drivers in Beijing refusing to give way to a fire engine has gone viral online and generated renewed concern about increasingly selfish behaviour in China.

The amateur video, filmed in an area of Beijing where a noodle restaurant was on fire, shows a fire engine attempting to get through traffic but none of the cars makes way and some even pull over in front of the vehicle to block its path.

Other drivers blocking the road refuse to make and make U-turns while the fire engine remains stuck in traffic.

The video, viewed more than 1.2-million times on v.youku.com, has sparked strong indignation and concern over the "selfishness" of China's drivers.


A viewer commented: "The 5000 years of history and civilisation of our heavenly dynasty."

Another viewer commented "If one person doesn't give way it's a moral shortcoming but if two people don't make way it's the sorrow of the community."

Online users have even posted videos filmed in Germany or Russia showing cars pulling over on roads and highways to make way for emergency vehicles in a bid to illustrate what happens in other countries.

There has been much soul-searching in China about a perceived rise in selfish behaviour since footage from a security camera showed people ignoring a toddler, lying in the road unconscious and bleeding after being run over twice by a truck, shocked the country.

Two-year-old Yue Yue later died in hospital and the incident in October 2011 sparked strong condemnation and concern that China's rapid development and urbanisation had seen people lose their sense of shared values.

Watch the video below: We apologise for the poor quality


  • AdriaanD.duPlessis - 2012-02-22 13:17

    Interesting to see it happens all over the world. In SA I have seen a lot of emergency vehicles switching on their emergency lights and sirens when the traffic is a bit bad, just to get through the traffic faster. Perhpas this is the same case in China.

  • phathuchicos - 2012-02-22 19:31

    Chinese are behaving more SA taxi drivers...lol

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