Bus driver docked for careless driving

Local | Wallis Wang 9 Jun 2021

A New World First Bus driver who honked and gave police officers the finger amid a protest last year was sentenced to 100 hours of community service by a Kowloon City court magistrate yesterday.

That came after Cheung Ho-yin, 37, was convicted of two counts of careless driving.

He drove the route 970 double-decker past officers at high speed on Nathan Road in Yau Ma Tei as protesters marched from Jordan to Mong Kok on September 6. He was also accused of improper control of the steering wheel earlier that day on Hong Kong Island.

Principal magistrate Ada Yim Shun-yee criticized Cheung for endangering passengers and other road users in Yau Ma Tei.

Yim said Cheung knew he should slow down the bus and keep a safe distance from other people on the road when changing lanes, but still drove close to the police officers.

Cheung had said he was expressing dissatisfaction with the jam, but Yim said such a driving attitude was not acceptable.

Cheung was also accused of careless driving in August 2019 and now has three offense records, which Yim said showed Cheung can let emotions affect his driving, attentiveness and cautiousness.

He is also disqualified from driving for three months.

Cheung said outside court that he has been suspended since May 28 but was not fired. “I have to learn from the incident,” he said. The head of the New World First Bus Company Staff Union, Lam Kam-piu, said the sentence was too harsh.

Lam criticized the police for not closing the road despite knowing about the march.

The police, he said, were getting on the road, forcing Cheung to honk in warning, and that became a ground for prosecution.

Lam also accused the force of dragging out the case. He would discuss with Cheung and his legal team on the feasibility of launching an appeal against the sentence.

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