Saigon firm to compensate foreign tourist $1,000 for bloody sidewalk fall

By Duy Tran   April 10, 2017 | 06:23 pm PT
Saigon firm to compensate foreign tourist $1,000 for bloody sidewalk fall
The sidewalk hook that trapped the foreign tourist and caused her to hit the ground on April 4. Photo by VTCNews
The compensation has no precedent, even though many have tripped over the hooks before.

A Vietnamese company has agreed to pay a foreign tourist $1,000 in compensation after one of the metal hooks it had installed on sidewalks for nighttime entertainment programs in Ho Chi Minh City caused her to fall flat on her face last week. 

The Vien Dong Import Export Investment Co said it has agreed with District 1 authorities' request to compensate the woman and send her a written apology. 

The middle-aged woman was with a group of foreigners who were about to cross the street at the Le Loi – Nam Ky Khoi Nghia junction on April 4 when she tripped over the metal hook, hitting her face on the ground. 

Local residents said the two hooks on the street corner, each seven centimeters (0.2 feet) high, had already tripped up many people, but no compensation had reportedly been paid before.

District 1 officials said the hooks were installed for light shows during holidays. They have asked the company to remove all such hooks in the district by the end of this week.

The district is in the middle of a sidewalk clean-up, aimed at reclaiming the sidewalks as safe public spaces for pedestrians and turning the city’s central area into a “Little Singapore”.

Since early February, it has put up barriers, dispatched police to stop motorbikes from driving on pavements, towed many cars for illegal parking and destroyed constructions that took up walking space.

The campaign has been widely applauded by locals; but it has also raised concerns for being too extreme. 

Similar actions have been taken by other districts in Ho Chi Minh City and major cities across Vietnam.

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