Cement mixer accident causes huge jam on SLE

The cement mixer is understood to have skidded before crashing into the central divider, spilling cement onto both sides of the road. Parts of the SLE were closed for about two hours.
The cement mixer is understood to have skidded before crashing into the central divider, spilling cement onto both sides of the road. Parts of the SLE were closed for about two hours.PHOTO: FACEBOOK/SINGAPORE CIVIL DEFENCE FORCE

An overturned cement mixer caused parts of Seletar Expressway (SLE) to be closed yesterday for about two hours, affecting motorists during the morning peak hour.

It is understood that the truck skidded before crashing into the expressway's central divider, spilling cement onto both sides of the road and trapping the driver. No other vehicles were involved in the accident.

A spokesman for the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said it was alerted to the accident at about 3.20am. It dispatched a Red Rhino, an ambulance, a fire engine and four support vehicles to the scene.

"The truck's front cabin was badly crushed into the tree. As a result, the driver's lower body was trapped by the steering wheel and dashboard," the spokesman said.

The SCDF's rescue operation took about 2½ hours and required the use of hydraulic rescue equipment and a crane.

The injured driver suffered fractures to his hip and thigh and was taken to Khoo Teck Puat Hospital in stable condition.

A massive jam formed in both directions of the SLE, with congestion stretching to as far as the Tampines Expressway exit.

Parts of the SLE before the Upper Thomson Road exit were closed at about 7.50am, and the truck was towed away at about 8.20am.

Mr Lim Peng Soon, 61 , who is self-employed, said he was stuck in the jam for about 1½ hours.

"Usually, the journey from Woodlands to Changi takes half an hour, but the traffic was crawling on the SLE from Woodlands to the Upper Thomson Road exit today.

"We were barely moving, and the morning traffic made matters worse."

Normal traffic resumed in both directions of the expressway at about 10.40am.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 19, 2016, with the headline 'Cement mixer accident causes huge jam on SLE'. Print Edition | Subscribe