Skip to main content

Advertisement

Advertisement

Tanjong Pagar car crash brings area’s speeding problem to the fore

SINGAPORE — The Traffic Police are exploring road calming measures and stepping up enforcement operations at Tanjong Pagar in the wake of the car crash that killed five people and severely injured a woman who tried to save them.

Flowers and offerings such as oranges and packet drinks were seen at the accident site on Sunday, before it was cordoned off to the public.

Flowers and offerings such as oranges and packet drinks were seen at the accident site on Sunday, before it was cordoned off to the public.

Singapore

Follow us on Instagram and Tiktok, and join our Telegram channel for the latest updates.

 

  • Residents and business owners said the crash on Feb 13 resurfaced the age-old issue of speeding in an area with many watering holes
  • MP Indranee Rajah said that past complaints related to speeding or racing were mostly in the Cantonment Road vicinity
  • The police said it was the highest number of people killed in a single traffic accident in the past decade

 

 

SINGAPORE — The Traffic Police are exploring road calming measures and stepping up enforcement operations at Tanjong Pagar in the wake of the car crash that killed five people and severely injured a woman who tried to save them.

In response to TODAY’s queries on Sunday (Feb 14), the Traffic Police said they are studying the situation at Tanjong Pagar. They did not disclose the number and location of enforcement operations they had taken.

The incident on early Saturday morning killed Jonathan Long and Eugene Yap, both 29, Elvin Tan Yong Hao, 28, Teo Qi Xiang, 26, and Gary Wong Hong Chieh, 29.

The police said it was the highest number of people killed in a single traffic accident in the past decade.

Long, who drove a white BMW, was believed to be speeding before the car crashed into a shophouse at 37 Tanjong Pagar Road and caught fire at about 5.40am.

His girlfriend, Ms Raybe Oh Siew Huey, 26, suffered severe burns to her body after trying to save them. She was in critical condition at the intensive care unit of the Singapore General Hospital as of Sunday afternoon.

TODAY understands that the bodies of all five victims have not been released from the mortuary.

Residents and business owners TODAY spoke to said the incident resurfaced the age-old issue of speeding in the area, which is littered with popular watering holes.

Mr Syed Kassim, a stall assistant at a Muslim food stall at Maxwell Food Centre, said the deafening sound of revving vehicles is a common occurrence in the area, especially on Friday and Saturday nights.

The sounds usually come from the nearby Ann Siang Hill area, where many bars and restaurants are located, the 47-year-old added. It is so frequent that Mr Syed Kassim can, at times, identify the model of the cars based on the sound of the engines alone.

“The road is already (very narrow) and some of them drive very fast in this area. It’s scary,” he said.

The owner of a Chinese dessert stall, who wanted to be known only as Mr Chua, said he has seen drivers “trying their luck” and speeding in the wee hours of the morning on weekends.

“If they can control the car, never mind. My biggest worry is that some of them might have been drinking and can hurt a pedestrian,” the 52-year-old added.

Residents in the area echoed the same sentiments.

Madam Norizan Mohamaddan, 56, said the crash on Saturday was so loud that it jolted her from her sleep — and it was not the first time.

In the last five years that she has been living in her public housing flat at Block 333 Kreta Ayer Road, which is a five-minute walk from the crash site, the homemaker has witnessed four car crashes in the area.

Similarly, a retiree in his 70s who wants to be known only as Mr Chong, who said the speeding sounds have disrupted his sleep multiple times, pointed to the stretch on Cantonment Road and along Maxwell Food Centre as the areas where he has seen drivers speed.

Mr Clarence Lim, a wealth management analyst, who lives two minutes away from Saturday's crash site, said he did not think much about the sounds of revving engines in the area as it is a trade-off for the good city location.

But the incident has cast a spotlight on the speeding issue in his neighbourhood, added the 39-year-old.

A view of the area where the car crash happened. Photo: Ili Nadhirah Mansor/TODAY

INSTALLING SPEED CAMERAS, SPEED BUMPS

Ms Indranee Rajah, Member of Parliament for the Tanjong Pagar Group Representation Constituency, said on Sunday that complaints she has received in the past related to speeding or racing were mostly in the Cantonment Road vicinity.

“I think one or two (complaints received) are in this area, meaning Craig Road and Tanjong Pagar Road. The majority of noise complaints I received here were largely of people after hours, drinking, smoking, that kind of associated noise,” she told reporters.

Addressing concerns on speeding, Ms Indranee said she has asked the Traffic Police to look into what can be done in the vicinity. Measures that could be considered include installing speed cameras and looking at infrastructure to reduce vehicles’ speed.

When considering installing cameras, Ms Indranee said the Traffic Police would have to work with the Land Transport Authority on the location of the cameras. This would determine whether or not the cameras can catch the licence plate number of speeding vehicles, she added.

A view of the Tanjong Pagar area on Feb 14, 2021. Photo: Ili Nadhirah Mansor/TODAY

Installing infrastructure that can reduce the speed of vehicles, such as speed bumps, needs to take into account how these features would affect traffic at all hours, especially the high traffic in the morning where residents would be driving out.

There could also be enforcement but it is difficult to deploy them at all times, said Ms Indranee, who is also Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office and Second Minister for Finance as well as National Development.

“So at the end of the day, the message to all drivers is please don't race, don't speed, because there can be very tragic consequences as we have seen, and the impact is not just on yourselves but also the families and friends.”

Ms Indranee added that she has also not seen an increase in speeding or racing-related complaints in recent days.

Flowers and offerings such as oranges and packet drinks were seen at the incident site on Sunday, before it was cordoned off to the public.

Related topics

speeding traffic accident Tanjong Pagar death Traffic Police

Read more of the latest in

Advertisement

Popular

Advertisement

Stay in the know. Anytime. Anywhere.

Subscribe to get daily news updates, insights and must reads delivered straight to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, I agree for my personal data to be used to send me TODAY newsletters, promotional offers and for research and analysis.