Society

Rescuers Claim They Didn’t Kill Asiana Victim, Contradict Coroner’s Report

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

San Francisco first responders who ran over a 16-year-old Asiana passenger say the girl was already dead, despite a contradictory coroner’s report.

San Mateo County Coroner Robert Foucrault ruled that Ye Meng Yuan died when she was hit twice by fire trucks at the crash sight of Asiana Airlines flight 214 in July.

The city of San Francisco filed a report with the National Transportation Safety Board claiming that the teen was already dead when rescuers arrived. The city says Ye was not wearing her seatbelt and died when she hit the ground, having been thrown from the back of the plane when its tail ripped off.

Based on survivor interviews the NTSB found that she did not have her seatbelt fastened, but two NTSB reports found dust, dirt, and firefighting foam in Ye’s trachea or lung tissues, indicating that she was still breathing while on the ground.

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The city did not conduct an autopsy or consult medical experts in their report.

Foucrault says it’s inaccurate.

"We did our examination, and we determined that the young lady was alive when she was struck by the fire trucks," Foucrault said. "The death certificate says what it says. If someone wants to put a spin on something they can do that."

He reported last summer that internal hemorrhaging showed the Ye's heart was beating when she was run over.

The city report is one of hundreds of documents the NTSB is reviewing in its accident investigation.

Sources: USA Today, Newser