In a very terrifying scene,a lorry driver ran over a five-year-old boy – and then reversed over him to make sure he was dead in an apparent attempt to avoid footing hospital bills for the child.
The sickening incident happened in Luzhou, western China, when driver Ao Yong hit Xiong Maoke as he left home to walk to school.
Witness Zhang Shifen said: 'I saw the truck move back a little and then move forward again. Xiong became wrapped up in the wheel and the truck continued forward another ten yards.'
The tragedy comes just a week after two-year-old Yue Yue was knocked down by two vehicles on a busy market street. The child was ignored by 18 passers-by before someone came to her aid. She died in hospital a few days later.
In this latest incident passers-by said the lorry driver jumped from his cab after hitting the boy. They claimed Yong then asked: 'How much shall I pay?'
After the latest incident, Yong denied reversing over the boy to kill him. Last night, police and government staff insisted Xiong died on impact.
A string of such horrific cases have led to soul-searching in China, where the economic boom has been blamed for fuelling materialism at the cost of compassion.
Handing over compensation if an accident victim dies is seen by many Chinese as cheaper than paying for lengthy hospital treatment. The Communist regime does not provide free healthcare for its 1.3billion citizens.
Ignored: In a similar incident the previous week, Yue Yue was left with horrific brain injuries and never recovered
The fear of high medical bills is also thought to be behind a second accident in China in which toddler Yue Yue was knocked down by two vehicles on a busy market street.
The gruesome ordeal, captured by security cameras, showed the bleeding child was ignored by 18 passers-by before she was picked up by a scrap picker and given to her mother, who rushed to the street looking for her.
A week after the accident, she died in hospital.