Cabby fined over accident which left pillion paralysed
Cabby gets two-year driving ban, $5,000 fine
He was making a right turn when he failed to give way to a motorcycle.
His taxi slammed into the bike, seriously injuring the biker and his pillion.
One of them was paralysed from the neck down and remains wheelchair-bound.
Yesterday, cabby Seah Swee Hin, 57, was given the maximum fine of $5,000 and banned from driving for two years for negligent driving.
Court papers said Seah was driving along Hougang Avenue 2 towards Upper Serangoon Road at 1.25am on Aug 26 last year.
As he was turning right into Upper Serangoon Road, he failed to give way to Mr Velidam Santanam, 61, a Singaporean permanent resident, who was riding his motorcycle in the opposite direction towards Hougang Avenue 3. Mr Velidam's pillion was Mr Alakchanda Lurusamy, 53.
The weather was fine, the road was dry and visibility was fair.
After the accident, Seah made a police report and the two injured men were taken by ambulance to Tan Tock Seng Hospital.
Mr Velidam was treated for a fracture to his right shin and was discharged after 10 days, with 44 days' medical leave.
Mr Alakchanda's injuries were far worse.
He suffered a severe spinal cord injury, which left him a tetraplegic - paralysed from the neck down - with bowel problems.
He was discharged only two months later, with 56 days' medical leave.
Although his condition improved after surgery and physiotherapy, Mr Alakchanda, a Malaysian, remains wheelchair-bound, the court heard.
Yesterday, Seah, who was not represented by a lawyer, pleaded guilty to one count of causing grievous hurt by a negligent act.
He pleaded for a light fine and a short driving disqualification period.
But District Judge Jasvender Kaur noted that Mr Velidam and Mr Alakchanda had the right of way and Seah ought to have noticed the motorcycle while making the right turn.
"The result of your failure to do so resulted in very serious injuries to the pillion (Mr Alakchanda) who is now wheelchair-bound," said the judge.
Seah could have been jailed up to two years, on top of the maximum fine imposed, for causing grievous hurt by a negligent act.
The result of your failure to do so resulted in very serious injuries to the pillion (Mr Alakchanda Lurusamy) who is now wheelchair-bound.
- District Judge Jasvender Kaur to cabby Seah Swee Hin