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New video indicates rescuers saw body on ground in Asiana crash before girl was run over

Watch dramatic footage of the scene from the helmets cameras of the first responders to the Asiana Flight 214 crash.

Video recorded by the helmet camera of a first responder and the dash-cam of a fire truck at the crash site of an Asiana Airlines flight in San Francisco last year shows at least one firefighter noticed someone was on the ground outside the aircraft and alerted a colleague.

Later during the rescue operation, two fire trucks ran over the injured passenger -- who was still alive at the time she was spotted, according to a coroner. 

The video first aired on CBS News Tuesday and was released to NBC News Wednesday. According to an attorney for her family, it shows 16-year-old Ye Meng Yuan lying in the grass before she was hit.

AP file

Ye Meng Yuan

A coroner said Yuan died when she was struck by a truck in the wake of the July 6 crash at San Francisco International Airport. 

An autopsy determined the girl died from "multiple blunt injuries that are consistent with being run over by a motor vehicle."

"Our forensic examination revealed that she was still alive when she received those injuries," San Mateo County Coroner Robert Foucrault said last year.

The scene depicted in the video is chaotic, as rescuers rushed toward the wreckage of the aircraft. 

The firefighter with the helmet camera can be heard warning the driver of a truck that there's someone on the ground. A firefighter can then be seen guiding the truck away from the person lying on the ground, just minutes following the crash.


As a truck begins spraying down the aircraft with foam, some of it ends up partially covering the body on the ground. It is unclear why first responders did not mark the presence of the person on the ground. 

The first truck ran over Yuan about 15 minutes after the driver was alerted about her presence. A second one followed minutes later. 

Officials confirmed at the time that one of the crash victims was run over by a fire truck. Firefighters told investigators they assumed the girl was dead and carried on the rescue operation. 

"This is not a matter of us being careless or callous," Assistant Deputy Chief Dale Carnes said last month. "It was the fact we were dealing with a very complex environment." 

Yuan's parents filed a claim against the city San Francisco, which states that emergency crews were reckless and poorly trained.

Attorneys for the parents said firefighters who came across the teen should have examined her and transported her to a safe place.

"She was the only child," Gretchen Nelson, an attorney for the family, told Reuters. "That is a significant issue. In China there is a one child policy and this was their one child."

In the family’s claim, attorneys at the law firm Kreindler and Kreindler, which specializes in aviation-related lawsuits, named 37 individual airport, fire and police department employees, The Associated Press reported.

Two San Francisco firefighters saw the girl lying on the ground and alerted a supervisor, but they were instructed to move on and failed to mark her location, the claim says.

How Yuan was separated from the plane remains unclear, though the claim says rescuers may have actually removed her from the plane.

The San Francisco Fire Department would not comment on the video because of the pending litigation.

Federal investigators believe the Boeing 777 came in too slow and too low and clipped the seawall on the runway as it landed. After its tail was ripped off, it spun around and eventually burst into flames.

Yuan’s classmate and travel companion, identified by the Korean-based airline as 16-year-old Wang Linjia, was also killed in the crash.

A third girl, a 15-year-old, died of her critical injuries six days later.

NBC News' Jeff Black and The Associated Press contributed to this report.