POCHEON, South Korea, Aug. 31 (Yonhap) — Four South Koreans died after their car crashed into a U.S. armored vehicle on Sunday night in Pocheon, north of Seoul, police said.
The two couples were heading home when their sport utility vehicle rear-ended the U.S. armored vehicle at around 9:30 p.m. near the Rodriguez Live Fire Range.
The occupants, all in their 50s, were pronounced dead after being taken to a nearby hospital and receiving emergency treatment including CPR.
One American soldier sustained a minor injury and was taken to a hospital.
The SUV’s engine was damaged beyond recognition due to the impact of the crash, while the armored vehicle’s caterpillar tracks on the right side were damaged.
U.S. soldiers in the armored vehicles were on their way to their base in Cheorwon, Gangwon Province, after a drill, the police said, adding that the road where the accident occurred was frequently used by U.S. armored vehicles.
The police have requested an autopsy of the driver and were investigating whether the driver’s taking over the wheel from another person minutes before the crash had anything to do with the accident.
“USFK, Eighth Army and 2nd Infantry ROK-US Combined Division are fully cooperating with the KNP (Korean National Police) investigation,” U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) said in a statement issued on Monday.
“USFK offers its deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of the deceased following this tragic accident,” the U.S. military said, adding that the Eighth Army is temporarily suspending training in the area out of respect to those killed and their families.
In a tweet, U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris joined the USFK in expressing his “deepest” condolences to the families and loved ones of the Koreans who died in the accident.
This photo provided by the Gyeonggi Northern Fire Department shows the scene of a car accident on Aug. 30, 2020, in Pocheon, South Korea, which left four Koreans dead. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)