A 42-year-old e-scooter rider who hit a child on a park connector that caused him a skull fracture and temporary hearing loss was given five days' jail on Thursday, November 7 for negligently causing grievous hurt. The six-year-old victim was taken to the hospital after the accident and was admitted for 14 days.
As per the reports, prior to this accident which took place in April 2018, the victim's grandmother was riding a bicycle in the Punggol Park Connector while the child was sitting in the back. When they are about to reach their condominium, the boy told his grandmother that he wanted to get off the bicycle. During the court hearing Deputy Public Prosecutor R. Arvindren mentioned that while the grandmother continued to cycle, the boy ran towards the left side of the park connector.
The 42-year-old e-scooter rider Neo Wei Chia was riding the PMD and going fast on the right side of the park connector. He could see the victim on the right side of the park connector but did not slow down and when the boy suddenly crossed the right side, the accused crashed into the back of the boy. After the collision, the boy bled from his left ear and soon he was taken to the KK Women's and Children's Hospital. Further check-ups revealed that the boy has suffered abrasions, lacerations and a skull fracture. However, the defence lawyer, K. Jayakumar Naidu, who represented Neo in court stated that his client offered to pay for the boy's medical expenses.
Here it should be noted that in Singapore, the road fatality rate of 2.73 per 100,000 citizens is higher than in Hong Kong, London and Tokyo. Recently, to ensure the safety of the pedestrians Senior Minister of State for Transport Lam Pin Min said that in the past two years the government put in great efforts to promote the safe use of motorised personal mobility devices but "Despite significant efforts, we continue to encounter errant riders who use non-compliant devices and ride dangerously." So the government has decided to ban the e-scooters from the footpath.
This new rule has created chaos in the republic and many PMD users criticised the minister for imposing the ban. Many riders also take this issue to their MPs. Meanwhile, the Home Affairs and Law Minister K Shanmugam said he had a discussion with almost 30 PMD riders, who were gathered in Yishun to express their concerns regarding the ban.