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Rachel Lu

Drunk Driver’s Final Tweet Leaves Much Behind

@安娜830321‘s final tweet on Sina Weibo said it all. “So drunk, but still gotta drive home,” posted the tipsy young woman with a photo of herself in a car on August 19 at 4:29am.

The next day, local news in Shantou, Guangdong Province, reported that a white BMW rammed into a road barrier in early morning and the female driver was killed.

Almost three months later, some social media users put two and two together and figured out that @安娜830321 had left her final message on Weibo. The immediacy of @安娜830321‘s death seemed to have shaken many of her fellow social media users. The topic became the most discussed story on Sina Weibo on November 1, with more than 33,000 comments and 49,000 retweets.

@安娜830321‘s Weibo account was left undisturbed after the accident, and it offered a glimpse into her life as a wealthy single mother of a two and half year-old boy. While she doted on her son, many of her tweets also involved drinking. Some commentators speculated that her alcoholism stemmed from a failed marriage.

Chinese law enforcement has cracked down hard on drunk driving in recent years, even attaching criminal sentences to drunk driving charges, but the problem remains prevalent and somewhat socially tolerated.  According to a survey conducted by Southern Metropolis, a Chinese newspaper, in April 2012, more than 60% of those surveyed said they would not stop their friends from driving drunk.

 

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Rachel Lu

Rachel Lu is a co-founder of Tea Leaf Nation. Rachel traces her ancestry to Southern China. She spent much of her childhood memorizing Chinese poetry. After long stints in New York, New Haven and Cambridge, she has returned to China to bear witness to its great transformation. She is currently based in China.
  • Carlotta James

    Sad story, though I think that with our current use of social media in posting everything online, we will continue to see stories similar to this one.

  • Carlotta James

    Sad story, though I think that with our current use of social media in posting everything online, we will continue to see stories similar to this one.

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