Marketing manager in fatal accident was drunk

A driver who had his left arm severed in a Pan-Island Expressway (PIE) car crash last November that killed him, was highly intoxicated.

A coroner yesterday found the death of marketing manager Tan Hock Hai - who had 271mg ethanol per 100ml of blood, more than three times the legal limit for drink driving - to be an unfortunate traffic misadventure.

An inquest heard that the 40-year-old was negotiating a gradual right bend after the exit from Upper Jurong Road along the third lane of the PIE towards the airport at about 1.50am on Nov 2 last year.

His black Fiat Bravo then veered left and entered the motorcycle rain shelter under the Paya Lebar flyover. It mounted the pavement and crashed into three guard railings before coming to a stop.

A piece of railing pierced the car's rear windscreen, and was the apparent cause of the severing of his left arm. The arm was found several metres away from the car.

  • 271mg

    Amount of ethanol per 100ml of blood found in marketing manager Tan Hock Hai. It is more than three times the legal limit for drink driving.

Mr Tan was pronounced dead at the scene at 2.06am.

Investigations showed that the event involved just Mr Tan's car, which had skidded.

Mr Tan's wife had told police that he would meet clients and friends at least once a week for entertainment after work in the Jurong area.

In his findings, State Coroner Marvin Bay said it was likely that Mr Tan's consumption of alcohol played a significant role in the accident.

He said it was fortunate that the motorcycle rain shelter was unoccupied when Mr Tan's car veered and impacted against it.

"It is nonetheless tragic that Mr Tan's inebriation has caused his untimely demise,'' he said.

He said the deaths of Mr Tan and two others - a motorcyclist and a 25-year-old Institute of Technical Education student - he heard over the last two weeks underscored the very real consequences and tragic costs of disregarding the oft-cited advice to avoid driving any vehicle after consuming alcohol.

Elena Chong

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 24, 2017, with the headline 'Marketing manager in fatal accident was drunk'. Print Edition | Subscribe