A Ferrari crash on a Beijing highway in the early morning hours of Tuesday may not have aroused much attention, until netizens suddenly found that searches for “Ferrari” were blocked on microblogging sites. Rumors started flying about the identity of the driver, who died in the crash, and why officials wanted the news covered up. Unconfirmed reports have said it was the son born out of wedlock to Politburo member Jia Qinglin. Two female passengers were taken to the hospital. Global Times English edition posted a story about the crash and subsequent censoring:
The crash, near Baofu Temple, Haidian district, in the early hours of Sunday killed the driver, reported the Beijing Evening News on Sunday. The two women were hospitalized.
A black Ferrari, driven by a man from west to east along the North Fourth Ring Road access road, crashed into the wall on the southern side of Baofusi Bridge around 4:00 am, then smashed into the guardrail on the roadside.
According to pictures posted online of the aftermath of the crash, the Ferrari was ripped in half, with the front portion crushed and the engine in flames.
The injured women were transferred to hospital by the Beijing Emergency Medical Center (BEMC).
And from the Globe and Mail:
That might have been the end of the story – another tale of reckless driving on Beijing’s roads – if China’s tireless censors hadn’t kicked in and raised suspicions. First, the initial report by the Beijing Evening News disappeared from Sina Weibo, China’s Twitter-like microblogging service. Then, other reports and comments on the crash started disappearing from other websites.
Soon, entering the word “Ferrari” on Chinese websites brought you to a dead end familiar to most of the country’s 500 million Internet users: “According to the relevant policies and laws, the
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