‘Death penalty’ for peeing on tracks

By Zhang Hui Source:Global Times Published: 2012-12-20 0:45:06

A Beijing Subway representative warned that peeing on the tracks could lead to a fatal shock, as a video of a middle-aged man relieving himself at Yuquanlu Station went viral across the Web on Wednesday.

The Beijing Subway has neither the manpower nor authority to stop people from peeing in its stations, said a woman surnamed Guo from the subway public relations department.

But strict enforcement may not be necessary.

"It's dangerous to urinate to the tracks. One can get an electric shock and die, because 700 volts run through each of the three subway rails," said a representative from the subway's customer service hotline.

The representative suggested passengers contact subway employees or call police if they witness such behavior.

In the one-minute video, a man at his 40s wearing a black jacket urinates on the tracks on Tuesday. No one approached him during the whole process. The man left after he finished.

The public urination video was not the first to go viral this year. Earlier this month, a video showed a young man urinating out of a public bus window in Xiamen, Fujian Province.

And in August, a video showed a man on a bus in Chongqing urinating twice before he got off. Neither the passengers nor the bus driver tried to stop him, according to Chongqing Economic Times.

In all three cases, Web users criticized the men as immoral and wanted them punished.

But Guo told the Global Times, "We are not empowered to punish the man or fine him because we are not the law enforcement officers." She added that although signs in the station ban urinating and defecation other than in the public toilets, "we never thought someone would actually do it. A normal person with basic sense of morality would not do it."

Each subway station has a clear sign to show the direction of public toilet, and Guo could not figure out why the man in the video did not use it.

The subway company doesn't have enough staff to patrol through the station to stop vulgar acts, she added.

Yang Weidong, a law professor at the Chinese Academy of Governance, said such vulgar behavior violated public order, and should be fined up to 500 yuan ($80).

Beijing Subway faced criticism for a lack of supervision after several women's faces were slashed by an attacker in subway stations earlier this month. A man carried a leaky cylinder of gas onto a subway train in late November.

Zi Xiangdong, media officer of the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau said he can not reveal the statistics related to subway police to media.

Posted in: Society, Metro Beijing

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