A mother and her 11-year-old daughter were in intensive care last night after apparently jumping off a footbridge in Tsuen Wan.
Witnesses told police they saw the pair leap from the 10-metre-high bridge on Sai Lau Kok Road near a public library.
A passer-by rushed over to find Zeng Guomei, 46, and her daughter Lam lying conscious on the pavement. Their belongings, including a handbag and backpack, were left on the bridge. No suicide note was found.
The mother, whose injuries included fractures to bones in her feet, was in critical condition in Princess Margaret Hospital, Kwai Chung, last night, while the daughter had a fractured hand and was in stable condition in the same hospital. Both were said to be conscious but not fit to be questioned by police.
Officers were last night trying to contact the father, who is believed to be in Hong Kong.
The mother and daughter live in a flat in Wing Ka House, Fuk Loi Estate, close to the footbridge.
Neighbours said the pair had lived in the estate for more than a year but they never saw the husband. They said social workers visited the household and Zeng often approached a district councillor for help.
The daughter is a sixth-grader at Si Yuan School of the Precious Blood on Shing Mun Road.
A police officer of Tsuen Wan district said security cameras did not cover the spot where the pair reportedly jumped and police were still trying to establish what had happened. He said the mother-daughter relationship was reported to be good.
In January, 47-year-old mother Louie Miu-man strangled her 10-year-old son before hanging herself at their home in Taikoo Shing.
She had been discharged at the family's request against medical advice from Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital in Chai Wan just four days before. She was earlier admitted after threatening to kill herself.