Lorry driver jailed, banned from driving for fatal accident

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A lorry driver was driving out of a work site at a junior college when he failed to stop and crashed into a man riding a power-assisted bicycle.

On Wednesday (Aug 16), Indian national Thanabal Balachandar, 25, was jailed for four weeks and banned from driving for five years for negligently causing the death of Mr Zhu Jinfu, 54, in Yishun Ring Road on Aug 31 last year.

He had pleaded guilty to the charge two weeks ago.

The court heard that Thanabal had been working on site at Yishun Junior College for a design company.

He was driving out of the school compound at about 10am that day to collect more construction materials when he did not stop at the stop line at the main entrance, despite a large sign stating "look out for pedestrians".

He continued driving, though not at a fast speed, and hit Mr Zhu at the main entrance. The victim suffered serious injuries and was taken to Khoo Teck Puat Hospital where he died at 6.10pm of multiple injuries.

An autopsy report stated that he had multiple rib fractures, injuries to his head and bruises on his limbs.

"Although the accused's view was partially blocked by the bushes at the main entrance of Yishun JC, there was a stop line with a warning sign that the accused failed to stop at," said Deputy Public Prosecutor Chong Kee En.

Thanabal also admitted that he was attempting to make a left turn after exiting, and failed to keep a proper lookout.

He did not notice the cyclist who had been moving from the lorry's left to right.

Thanabal could have been jailed for up to two years and/or fined for causing death by a negligent act.

COURT & CRIMEaccidentYishun