Asiana Plane Crash: 16-year-old Passenger Was Killed by SF Fire Truck
Ye Meng Yuan ,16, one of three passengers who died when Asiana Flight 214 crashed at SFO July 6 was killed by a San Francisco Fire rescue truck, the San Mateo County Coroner's Office confirmed this morning.
San Mateo County Coroner Robert Foucrault says the autopsy showed that the girl was alive after the plane crashed, and that she died from injuries she received from being run over by the fire truck.
Foucrault adds that the victim suffered "multiple blunt injuries" that are "consistent with being run over by a motor vehicle."
"It's a very emotional time for our office and the San Francisco Fire department," Foucrault told SF Weekly.
After the crash, Ye's body, along with another teenager, was found on the left side of the aircraft, about 30 feet away from where the Boeing 777 came to rest after it skidded down the tarmac.
San Francisco Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White acknowledged at a press conference last Monday that it was possible one of their rescue vehicles ran over a body at the scene. "One of our fire apparatus may have come into contact with one of our two victims who was at the scene," SF Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White said during a news conference July 8. "I assure you we are looking closely at this."
Four days later, on July 12, the SFPD confirmed that one of the teen victims was in fact run over by a San Francisco Fire rescue truck. According to Officer Albie Esparza, as SF Fire responded to the incident, a foam was dispersed to combat the burning fuselage that resulted from the crash.
Ye's body was discovered by a fireman on Saturday, the day of the crash, laying on top of a rescue truck's tire tracks, which made police think the victim might have been covered with the foam, obscuring her body.
"After one of the fire trucks repositioned itself, a body was discovered in the tire tracks left by one of the fire trucks," Esparza told us, adding that the foam might have prevented firefighters from seeing her body.
Ye is one of three fatalities of the crash. She was part of a group of 29 students and five teachers from China on their way to West Valley Christian Church's camp in Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley, according to school authorities in China.
The two other fatalities include 16-year-old Wang Linjia and Liu Yipeng, who died July 12, according to San Francisco General Hospital officials. Both were classmates of Ye and also on their way to the church camp.
Note: In Chinese terms, names are arranged in order of "family name" and then "given name", not "first" then "last" name, as is Western custom. Hence, Ye is the victim's last name.