EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

January 11, 2014

Parents of victim file claim against San Francisco

The parents of a 16-year-old girl killed after she was run over by two rescue vehicles at the scene of the Asiana Airlines crash at San Francisco International Airport took steps this week toward filing a lawsuit against the city.

Gan Ye and Xiao Yung Zheng, identified as the parents of Ye Meng Yuan, a Chinese national, are seeking damages in a wrongful-death claim against the city, according to documents filed with the San Francisco city attorney’s office.

Ye was one of three fatalities resulting from the crash July 6, when an Asiana Airlines jetliner struck a seawall and burst into flames on landing at SFO.

A San Mateo county coroner’s report subsequently determined Ye had been alive on the tarmac following the crash before she was struck by a vehicle. She suffered crushing injuries and internal bleeding, including blunt injuries consistent with being run over by a vehicle, the report said.

Details released in December by the National Transportation Safety Board as part of an ongoing investigation revealed Ye’s motionless body was run over not once, but two separate times within minutes by emergency vehicles trying to navigate the foam-covered tarmac.

The claim names several city agencies, including the Fire Department, Police Department and San Francisco International Airport, alleging rescue crews “breached their duty of care” and “abandoned Ye Meng Yuan in a perilous location.”

According to the claim, Ye Meng Yuan was first spotted lying on the ground by San Francisco firefighters Roger Phillips and Jimmy Yee, who were riding in Rescue 10. Phillips left the truck to help his partner maneuver around the body, the claim says, and alerted Lt. Christine Emmons of a passenger on the tarmac.

Emmons told the pair they should move on, the claim says, but none of them assessed the girl, told central command of her location or even marked her location.

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