Today is May 1st, which is a holiday here in China, but right now I don't feel to festive. I saw something that makes me question how efficient emergency services are here in China. The street we live on is a major street here in Yanji which while busy, the traffic is not heavy. About a block from us is an intersection with the main east/west artery from the city center. The traffic on this street is always busy, but the majority of vehicles are either taxis or small busses. Now crossing the streets here in Yanji is sometimes a bit of an adventure because drivers don't readily yield to pedestrians even if you are in the crosswalk. If a driver wants to make a left hand turn and their is oncoming traffic or people crossing, as far as the drivers are concerned, its "DAMN THE TORPEDOS, FULL SPEED AHEAD." But the bus drivers are in a class all their own. When they are in the inside lane, anywhere from half a block to closer to the intersection, their stop is just to the other side of it and if the light has or is about to change to red, they have this nasty little habit of pulling into the oncoming lane, blow through the intersection to get to their stop with no consideration of what might be coming. Many a time I have been crossing the street only to be stopped short as a bus honks its horn a split second before it cuts me off.
Today this practice if it hasn't seriously injured him, may have killed a man. As I was looking out our apartment window at the intersection I saw a group of people standing in it. As they moved I noticed a motorcycle on its side, an empty bus stopped just past it, then finally a person lying on the street. I immediately knew the bus had run a red light and hit him. As I watched the person and the motorcycle was surrounded by people as a shield while taxis and just weaved their way around and between them. About 15 minutes later the police finally showed up, but other than taking some pictures but didn't do anything to control the trafffic that was continuing to move in and around the accident scene or appear to render any aid of any sort. The ambulance didn't show until 35 minutes later and even then they didn't seem to be much in a hurry, which leads me to believe they guy may had been killed. Less than 15 minutes later the motorcycle was picked up, debris swept away and now the intersection looks like nothing has happened.
Even though I have been driving for over 40 years, incidents like this scare the bejabbers out of me and just reinforces my decision to not drive in Chinese cities.