A 54-year-old Taiwanese man and his 35-year-old Indonesian wife were killed on a journey home after being hit by a car while stopping to fix their crane truck on a highway in Nantou County in Taiwan last Friday evening.

The couple, who were landscape gardeners heading home to Yuchi Town, stopped on a hard shoulder of the eastbound National Highway No. 6 in Caotun Town at about 6.40pm.

They were reportedly trying to tighten a loose rope on their vehicle when the accident occurred, The Liberty Times reported.

A 65-year-old Buddhist monk, who was taking a colleague back to a temple in Puli in a private sedan, drove past the scene, which was apparently very dark.

It was reported that the monk’s sedan bumped into the highway guardrail after hitting ‘something’ and losing control.

The monk was reported to have got out of his vehicle and found the couple unconscious by the road. He called for police assistance immediately.

The man and his wife were rushed by officers from the Caotun Fire Department to Puli Christian Hospital, but both were pronounced dead shortly after.

A spokesman at the temple said the monk was ‘guilty’ of hitting the couple and very sad about the incident. A representative from the Buddhist organization said they would assist the couple’s relatives with follow-up actions.

The monk said to be driving the car at the time the fatal accident was taken to a police station to help local authorities investigating the incident to try to ascertain the actual cause.