Singapore

He saw dad's slippers at accident scene, then...

Man finds slippers by side of road familiar. They turn out to be those of his dad, who had died earlier in a crash

As he drove along a road where an accident had taken place two hours earlier, he saw something familiar and it set off a ripple of anxiety in him.

It was a pair of blue slippers that someone had placed by the side of the bloodstained road.

The 42-year-old delivery driver, who wanted to be known only as Mr Ng, said: "The slippers looked like my father's.I recognised them instantly, but I wanted so much to believe they were not his that I convinced myself otherwise.

"I kept thinking it was impossible that they were his."

Later, as Mr Ng was about to leave a nearby petrol station, his brother contacted him and broke the news to him.

"He told me Dad had got into an accident," said Mr Ng.

"I was shocked. I didn't want to believe it."

BACK TO THE SCENE

Mr Ng rushed back to the accident scene and had the information confirmed with the traffic police officers who were still there.

On Monday, Mr Ng Kim Hock, 82, a volunteer at Yu Lang Zhong Gong, a temple in Jurong, died after being hit by a taxi.

A police spokesman said the accident happened at Jurong West Avenue 1. The police were informed of it at about 1.20pm.

The elder Mr Ng was taken unconscious to the National University Hospital, where he died from head injuries.

It is believed that he was knocked down while crossing the road. He had been on his way back to the temple after buying some oranges at the nearby market.

About 20 people gathered at the area after the accident.

Student Anna Chang, 16, who helps her uncle at a pasar malam nearby, said she heard a loud bang and turned to see the elder Mr Ng lying face down on the road.

She said there were two slippers about 10m apart and fruit on the road.

"A lady came from across the road, checked on the man and called the ambulance," she said.

"It took the ambulance about five minutes to get to the scene and it took the man away."

Anna's uncle, Mr Toh, 50, said he did not hear anyone scream, but he heard the bang.

The Ng family found out about the accident only after 4pm, when they were contacted by a volunteer at the temple.

They have yet to come to terms with his death and are questioning why it took almost three hours for them to find out about the accident. "...no one told us, we were kept in the dark," said Mr Ng, the youngest of six children.

"We only found out from the temple volunteers. If not for them, we might never have found out."

The elder Mr Ng leaves behind his wife, four sons and two daughters, as well as 10 grandchildren.

A 52-year-old TransCab taxi driver has been arrested for committing a rash act resulting in death.

Police investigations are ongoing.

Mr Ng said his father was previously a construction worker and a cleaner, and had retired just over a year ago.

"He suffered his whole life, never getting a chance to enjoy anything, just so his family could have it slightly better," Mr Ng said.

"Even the four-room flat we live in now was paid for by him."

The elder Mr Ng lived in the flat with his wife, youngest son and daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren.

PLANS

He had not gone for a holiday in 20 years and had plans to finally leave the country and visit his sister in Malaysia next month.

His funeral will be held today.

"When I collected his body, his face was disfigured - there were stitches from his forehead to his cheek," said Mr Ng at the wake held at Jurong West Street 42.

"My heart's in pain. We don't even know what his last words were, or what last wishes he wanted fulfilled.

"Why did this happen to a good man? I'll never forgive the taxi driver, even if he apologises. TransCab didn't even contact any of us to say sorry."

TransCab general manager Jasmine Tan told The New Paper:"We are very sorry for the incident that had happened.

"The driver had reported the accident and our insurance company will get in touch with the family of the deceased."

But Mr Ng remains dissatisfied.

"We need to know what happened," he said.

Similar cases involving the elderly

JANUARY 2015

Mr Shaik Alawdin Mohd Habeeb, 79, died two days after he was involved in an accident with a taxi and car at the junction of Lower Delta Road and Tiong Bahru Road.

The details surrounding his death are unclear and the case is still under investigation.

NOVEMBER 2014

Cardboard collector Zheng Yuan Ying was killed in an accident at Marsiling Lane.

The 86-year-old was pushing a trolley across the road when he was knocked down by a private bus.

DECEMBER 2013

Mr Loo Peck Lay, 61, died after being hit by a van as he was crossing the road at the T-junction of Jurong Town Hall Road and Pandan Gardens.

The restaurant delivery driver in the van was banned from driving for five years for negligently causing the death of an elderly pedestrian. He was also fined $7,000.

NOVEMBER 2013

Mr Sonnie Lien, 78, a pioneering hotelier, died when a Volkswagen Passat crashed into him as he was crossing Holland Grove Road.

The driver was given the maximum $1,000 fine for driving without due care and attention.He was also banned from driving for six months.

BY THE NUMBERS

Number of elderly pedestrian fatalities

2014: 25

2013: 17

Number of people killed in traffic accidents

2014: 154

2013: 160

Number of fatal accidents

2014: 149

2013: 150

Number of injury accident cases

2014: 7,791

2013: 7,598

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