A disgruntled Singaporean, Ros Chia, has taken to the internet to call out an SMRT Taxi driver for allegedly trying to extort over $2100 in insurance claims over an accident in which his taxi was not damaged at all.
Chia claims that she was in her car with her husband as he was driving along the expressway behind the taxi driver’s vehicle. Suddenly, the taxi stopped abruptly. However, Chia’s husband managed to brake and stop their car before it hit the taxi. The driver of the car behind Chia was not so fast and bumped into Chia’s car – all throughout this, Chia claims, the taxi was untouched.
When Chia’s husband and the driver of the car behind him, Mr Ang, alighted their vehicles to discuss how to resolve the accident, the taxi driver also alighted and tried to join in the conversation.
Chia claims that her husband, Mr Ang and herself were shocked when the taxi driver suddenly claimed that his car was also hit in the crash:
“On 6 July 2017 around 9pm, my husband (Mr Chia) and me were in our car along CTE heading home. We were on the expressway behind vehicle SHB 1209D when the taxi driver suddenly jammed braked. My husband, who was driving the car, thankfully managed to brake in time. However, the car behind us unfortunately didn’t manage to stop in time and it hit us. Thankfully, no one was injured and there was only some minor scratches on our car, as the impact was rather small.
“My husband (Mr Chia) and the driver behind us (Mr Ang), got out of the car and started discussing on resolving the accident they had. The taxi driver got out of his taxi, approached them and told them “I am very familiar with such cases. Let’s claim on our own.”
“Feeling puzzled, we initially thought the taxi driver was trying to be helpful in dishing out advice. After all, this was none of his concern since his car was not hit at all. My husband then told the tax driver that they (he and Mr Ang) will settle among themselves. But the taxi driver continued interfering in their conversation and when my husband told him not to interfere as this was none of his business, he got angry.
“While trying to calm the taxi driver down, Mr Ang also told the taxi driver that he (Mr Ang) will settle with my husband himself. Interestingly, all throughout this time, instead of checking if there are any damages on his taxi, the taxi driver was more interested in their conversation. After some time, he finally revealed the real reason why he was trying to butt into a conversation that had nothing to do with him.
“He actually claimed that we hit his car and wanted to claim insurance against us!
“All of us were very shocked at his accusation and Mr Ang immediately defended us. The taxi driver even had the cheek to claim that his passenger in his car felt the impact too and his passenger can be his witness. When my husband and Mr Ang tried to walk over to the taxi to check with the passenger, the taxi driver stopped them and said “you are not allowed to speak to my witness”.
“Truth is, I was seated in the front passenger seat; and when my husband stepped on the brake, I was looking ahead all the time. I swear we did not even touch the taxi one bit.
“When I spoke up, the taxi driver told me I am related to my husband, so I cannot be a witness. At this point, after witnessing how this taxi driver was trying to be a bully; Mr Ang, who is a complete stranger to us, spoke up for us and said he will be our witness if the taxi driver claimed against us.
“When we tried to leave the scene after exchanging contact with Mr Ang, the taxi driver tried to stop us and demanded that we have to give him our details before we can leave. Since we did not have any accident with him, we refused to give in. He threatened to call the police and we said: “Go ahead. In fact, we are planning to make a police report as well.” In the end, he had no choice but to let us go.”
However, that’s not the end of the bizarre claim. The Chias and Mr Ang reportedly made police reports to safeguard themselves, in case the taxi driver really tried to file an insurance claim.
Although the incident occurred in July, the Chias received an insurance claim last Friday, on 20 Oct – 3 months after the alleged accident, claiming losses of $2114 due to Mr Chia’s “negligent driving”:
“Cost of repair $1,450? For an accident that never even happened??? For your reference, the repair cost for our car’s bummer that was hit by Mr Ang’s car from behind was only $250. And that is for an accident that is obvious from the pics above.
“This taxi driver has obviously filed a fake insurance claim! Mr Ang happened to have a passenger in his car as well, and both of them have kindly offered to be witnesses.”
Chia also posted more photos and asked some pertinent questions on her blog, before appealing to SMRT and the police to look into the matter:
“It is because of rogue drivers like him that car insurance premiums escalate and the reputation and image of SMRT taxi drivers is tarnished. His behavior is not only rude but he behaves like a gangster.
“Dear SMRT and police officer, I strongly appeal to you to please look into this matter seriously and make a thorough investigation; so as not to allow errant taxi drivers as such to get away from trying to make a profit out of the insurance companies and implicate innocent victims. Excusing this kind of behavior is a threat to public interest and security. If he can simply get away with this, what is stopping him from repeating it again to another innocent driver?”