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Cyclist jailed 12 days for fatally crashing into 73-year-old man at Hougang pedestrian crossing

SINGAPORE — A 46-year-old man was jailed for 12 days on Thursday (Aug 18) after he failed to keep a proper lookout while cycling on the roads, which led to him colliding with a pedestrian who was about to cross at a signalised junction.

Daniel Woon Hock Soon sped up to cross the first pedestrian crossing in the foreground before crashing into the victim at the pedestrian island of the second pedestrian crossing at the junction of Hougang Ave 3 and Lorong Ah Soo.

Daniel Woon Hock Soon sped up to cross the first pedestrian crossing in the foreground before crashing into the victim at the pedestrian island of the second pedestrian crossing at the junction of Hougang Ave 3 and Lorong Ah Soo.

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SINGAPORE — A 46-year-old man was jailed for 12 days on Thursday (Aug 18) after he failed to keep a proper lookout while cycling on the roads, which led to him colliding with a pedestrian who was about to cross at a signalised junction.

The victim, then aged 73, suffered a traumatic brain injury. He died in Changi General Hospital several hours later.

In August last year, Daniel Woon Hock Soon pleaded guilty to one count of committing a negligent act causing death.

Another charge of not wearing a helmet, which falls under the Road Traffic (Bicycles) Rules, was taken into consideration for sentencing.

The court heard that at around 7am that day, Woon was cycling on the left side of the third lane of a three-lane road along Hougang Avenue 3.

As he approached a pedestrian crossing, he claimed that the traffic light turned amber.

He then sped up and passed the crossing, before deciding to ride back onto the pavement by going up the pedestrian island of a second pedestrian crossing.

It was then that he collided with the victim, who was standing on the pedestrian island at the junction of Hougang Avenue 3 and Lorong Ah Soo. The victim had just stepped onto the road to cross at the signalised junction.

Woon did not witness the older man falling but saw him lying on his side on the road shortly after the collision.

Woon helped to carry him over to the pavement, staying at his side until an ambulance arrived.

The victim was taken to the hospital in an unconscious state and was pronounced dead at about 4.30pm.

A medical report showed that he had fallen backwards and sustained severe injuries that included bleeding in his brain and a skull fracture, which was consistent with a road traffic accident.

A mechanical inspection of Woon’s bicycle showed no evidence of any mechanical fault that could have caused or contributed to the accident.

At the time, traffic volume was of a moderate level, the road surface was dry and the weather was clear.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Wong Shiau Yin sought two to four weeks’ jail, noting that Woon’s string of traffic-related antecedents dated back to 2001. These included careless driving and speeding.

The prosecutor also said that Woon had breached the Highway Code by speeding up instead of slowing down at an amber light.

In mitigation, Woon — who did not have a lawyer — claimed that he had slowed down upon reaching the pedestrian island but did not anticipate the victim’s actions, which meant that he had to “make an emergency manoeuvre”.

However, when questioned by District Judge Janet Wang, he acknowledged that the fatal collision did occur.

The judge further noted Woon's “rather dismal” driving history but said that he had shown remorse. “It was a very unfortunate accident that could have been prevented,” she added.

Woon could have been jailed up to two years or fined, or punished with both, for causing death by a negligent act.

Related topics

court crime cyclist pedestrian collision death

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