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Sinopec probes staff over report of patient's death

By Li Qian   (Shanghai Daily)

08:51, May 28, 2013

China Petroleum & Chemical Co (Sinopec), China's top oil refiner, is investigating a media report that one of its gas stations in Hubei Province refused to sell fuel after hours to an ambulance, resulting in the death of the patient being rushed to hospital.

The ambulance was en route to a hospital in Enshi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture on May 24, carrying Chen Qianjun, 57, who was unconscious after falling from the third story of a building in Badong County, China News Service reported.

When the ambulance needed more gas and stopped at a Sinopec station in Jin'guoping County about 10pm, the two attendants told the driver the station had closed two hours earlier. They refused to budge even after Chen's daughter, who was accompanying her father to hospital, got down on her knees and begged for gasoline.

"It should have taken no more than 40 minutes to transport this patient to the hospital," said the ambulance driver, surnamed Jiang. "The patient could have received emergency treatment if we hadn't taken more than an hour to get there."

The ambulance finally managed to buy some gasoline from a private vendor, but Chen died before the ambulance reached the hospital.

Zhou Jianhua, a manager with Sinopec, said the gas station manager was inside the station counting the day's receipts and he didn't open the door for safety reasons.

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