Ontario man to pay $9,500 to victim after China crash
Jacob Gerow, 19, had been asked to pay $20K after his bike crashed into moped
A young Ontario man travelling in China will pay $9,500 to an injured woman's family after he was blamed for a bike-moped crash, and his family believes the money will help get him out of the country.
Jacob Gerow, 19, said he was riding in a rickshaw, which was being dragged by a bike, earlier this week down a road in Huangshan, a mountainous area in the Anhui province in eastern China.
The resident of Alexandria, Ont., added he then asked to take control and when he was riding the bike with the rickshaw driver in the back, he collided with a moped, a low-powered motorcycle.
An elderly woman who was riding on the moped suffered a broken leg and her family demanded $20,000 from Gerow to cover the medical costs, the man told CBC News.
On Friday, Gerow's family said they struck a deal with the family in China to pay $9,500, which should get the man home.
'It is not uncommon for foreigners to be blamed for accidents even though they are not at fault."—Department of Foreign Affairs website
Gerow had said he was afraid to leave his hotel room over two days.
He also accused police of not helping him and said he felt intimidated, though officers told him he could leave the hotel.
"The police and the family members are all in different spots and they're trying to be discreet about it," Gerow said Thursday. "But I know they're watching me all the time."
Canadians being blamed for traffic incidents
On its website, Canada's Department of Foreign Affairs warns Canadians about being blamed for traffic incidents in China, mentioning driving and not cycling.
"Foreigners driving in China face harsh penalties if they are involved in an accident. Police officers have the right to detain foreigners suspected of being responsible for road accidents until their case is closed, which can take years," the website reads.
"It is not uncommon for foreigners to be blamed for accidents even though they are not at fault."
Gerow has not been officially charged in the crash, he said, but his family offered the money to help him leave the country.
The department of foreign affairs confirmed to CBC News Thursday they have been helping a Canadian citizen currently in Huangshan, but they would not release a name.
Gerow's family had also been working with consular officials in Shanghai. The young man added once he gets out of China he will never travel there again.
"I consider myself adventurous when it comes to travelling. I don't mind doing these sorts of things but I don't want to do this again, that's for sure," Gerow said.