Residents say site of YCK crash is accident-prone
A pedestrian has recounted how a lorry narrowly missed hitting him just before it ran down three other people near Yio Chu Kang MRT station yesterday.
Mr Kayden Leow, 19, who is waiting to enlist for national service, said he crossed Ang Mo Kio Avenue 8 just seconds before the accident occurred.
"My heart stopped when I saw the lorry narrowly miss me. If I had taken two more steps to my left, I would not be here right now," he told The New Paper.
"I was shocked at first, but after less than a minute, I managed to compose myself, and I was worried for the people who had been hit."
Mr Leow said he had thought of helping the victims but felt he did not have the relevant medical knowledge to do so.
The three victims who were pronounced dead by paramedics at the scene were an elderly man, his daughter and another man believed to be a family friend.
Witnesses said they saw the lorry mount a kerb in Ang Mo Kio Avenue 6 at around 9.30am.
It careened forward and slammed into a railing near a pedestrian crossing.
The lorry then hit the victims and a traffic light before crashing into an SBS Transit bus waiting at a traffic light junction at Ang Mo Kio Avenue 8.
The impact cracked the front windscreen of the bus.
SBS Transit's senior vice-president of corporate communications Tammy Tan said in a statement: "Our bus was stationary at a traffic junction when a lorry came hurtling and hit three pedestrians and our bus.
"None of our passengers were injured. Our hearts go out to the family of the pedestrians."
When TNP visited the scene at 11.30am, relatives of the victims were in tears and had to be supported by other family members.
A Buddhist monk was chanting prayers at the crash site.Yesterday's incident was the third fatal accident reported in five days, prompting the Singapore Road Safety Council to express its alarm and urge road users to be more responsible.
Residents who spoke to TNP said the area around Yio Chu Kang MRT station is accident-prone, especially at the turn just before Anderson Junior College.
One of them who wanted to be known as Madam G. C. Lim, 64, said: "I often hear car horns blaring and tyres screeching."
The retiree, who lives in Block 634 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 6, which overlooks the accident site, said she often uses the pedestrian crossing to get to the bus interchange.
"I will be more careful the next time I cross the road," she added."
Third fatal accident in five days
The accident in Yio Chu Kang yesterday is the third reported fatal accident on Singapore roads in the last five days.
Last Thursday evening, National University of Singapore undergraduate Kathy Ong, 19, was killed after the taxi she was in with three friends was involved in a collision with a car at the junction of Clementi Road and Commonwealth Avenue West.
Then, early on Sunday, a 23-year-old woman died from her injuries after the Mercedes she was in collided with an SMRT bus at a traffic junction in Bukit Timah.
The Singapore Road Safety Council (SRSC) said in a statement yesterday that it was alarmed and sad to learn of the recent fatalities.
SRSC chairman Bernard Tay said: "The key lesson here is that accidents can be prevented.
"Every road user has the responsibility to look after one's own safety and to practise defensive habits whenever they are on the road."
Singapore Safety Driving Centre training manager Gerard Pereira told The New Paper that drivers need to be more aware because "everyone thinks they have the right of way".
He said: "If the junction is obstructed, drivers should inch their way out bit by bit until they can see the whole stretch of road."
When told that the lorry driver involved in the Yio Chu Kang accident had reportedly experienced blurry vision before he lost control of his vehicle, Mr Pereira said he should have pulled over immediately.
"I am sure the authorities would not have booked him if he had stopped because he wasn't feeling well," he added.
- LUCAS WONG AND HUANG RUNCHEN