Thursday, August 9, 2012

Chong Pang accident: 1 victim in ICU

At about 8am, a dark grey Mercedes was reversing into a parking space in front of Block 102 in Yishun Avenue 2 when the driver was said to have lost control of the vehicle, which then continued on for 50m.

The car slammed into a number of stalls under the block - including a newspaper stand and a vegetable stall, sending newspapers and red onions flying into the air - before coming to a stop after another 50m.

It also hit a parked Toyota, dislodging the white car's bumper.

Two men and three women - in their 50s and 60s - were injured in the incident, which was captured by a closed-circuit TV camera in the vicinity.

A video clip of the incident was uploaded online, and shows the speeding car ramming into the stalls with the driver's door open. Frantic passers-by can also be seen dashing out of the way.

A Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) spokesman said a phone call about the incident was received at about 8.15am.

Three ambulances took the five victims to the Khoo Teck Puat Hospital. The victims suffered head, limb and back injuries.

A police spokesman said that the driver, a 65-year-old man, was assisting in investigations. He was unhurt.

Some eyewitnesses said he may have been with his wife.

A Khoo Teck Puat Hospital spokesman said three of the five victims have since been discharged.

Of the two remaining victims, one was in a high-dependency ward in the hospital's Intensive Care Unit, while the other was in a general ward.

When my paper visited the scene at about 1pm, there was no sign of the car or any debris. A small shopping trolley, which stallholders said belonged to one of the injured women, was propped up against a nearby lamppost.

Ms Ma Jiayi, 45, a shop assistant at Lam Vegetables and Fruits, said she heard a loud crash 10 minutes after she arrived for work. There were about 10 customers at the shop at the time.

Recounting the screams and confusion that followed, she said: "I was so scared, I couldn't even react.

"One of the victims was sitting on the floor with a fractured leg. You could see the broken bone through his skin."

The victim who is in the high-dependency ward (HDW) at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital has been identified as 51-year-old Madam Mahalakshmi, The New Paper reported on Tuesday.

She is the last person to be hit and suffered the most serious injuries, including a cracked skull, fractured spine, collar bone and ribs, as well as internal bleeding in her brain.

Madam Mahalakshmi is still under observation. Her son told The New Paper that she still cannot speak coherently and lapses in and out of consciousness because of the sedatives she has to take.

The production operator at Seagate was shopping for groceries with her family at the market when she was hit.

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