Singapore — A driver failed to notice a drunk student lying on the road along Jalan Bukit Merah while making a left turn into a car park, ran over him twice. She was given a four-year ban and fined S$7,000.
Wai Ling Yee, 39, was banned from driving all classes of vehicles for four years, beginning Friday (Jul 23). She was also fined S$7,000 for the incident.
Wai was making a left turn into a car park entrance and did not see mechatronics student Hariharan Anoshun lying on the road.
Wai then reversed, thinking she had hit a pothole, and ran over Hariharan once more.
A passerby informed Wai that someone was trapped under her car.
Reports noted that Wai pleaded guilty to one count of causing death by a negligent act.
Her licence had been suspended since the accident on Sept 26, 2019.
Hariharan, who studied at Temasek Polytechnic, had exited from a taxi at about 1 am and knelt down on the first lane of Jalan Bukit Merah, beside a service road leading to a Housing and Development Board car park.
Another taxi driver spotted Hariharan in a horizontal position on the road and stopped his vehicle nearby to inform the authorities.
The taxi driver suspected that the man was on drugs and told the police that he was using his cab to block the way.
The court heard that Wai arrived at the scene and intended to turn into the car park.
She sounded her horn at the taxi driver, who gestured to her to overtake his vehicle.
However, Wai took a left turn too close and ran over Hariharan.
The victim had to be extricated before being conveyed while unconscious to Singapore General Hospital. He succumbed to injuries at about 2:40 am.
A pathologist noted in a post-mortem report that Hariharan had about 253mg of alcohol in every 100ml of blood which was three times more than the prescribed driving limit of 80mg per 100ml of blood.
Hariharan appeared to have been in a state of drunken stupor while lying on the road, noted the Health Sciences Authority.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Thiagesh Sukumaran requested Wai to be banned from driving for three to five years and fined S$10,000.
Wai’s lawyer, Sunil Sudheesan, sought a S$7,000 fine, noting that she had a “fleeting” period to react to the incident even if she saw the man on the road.
“Unfortunately, it is a case where it looks like alcohol played a part in the very least… Given the unique facts, there can certainly be a lot of scope or leeway to give to this accused person,” added the defence council.
For causing death by a negligent act, Wai could have been sentenced to up to two years imprisonment, fined, or both. Offenders may also be banned from driving for whatever period deemed fit by the court. /TISG
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