Truck driver jailed, banned for causing cyclist's death along pedestrian crossing

Chinese national Lu Liancai was sentenced to five week's jail and banned from driving for five years for causing the death of an elderly cyclist through his negligence.
Chinese national Lu Liancai was sentenced to five week's jail and banned from driving for five years for causing the death of an elderly cyclist through his negligence.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A tipper truck driver was making a right turn at a signalised junction when his vehicle struck an elderly cyclist along a pedestrian crossing with the light showing a blinking "green man'' in the cyclist's favour, a court heard.

Chinese national Lu Liancai, 39, had failed to keep a proper lookout while making a right turn from Lavender Street into Kallang Road on a "green only'' traffic light signal, and hit Mr Chng Hee Jay, 82, who was crossing from Lu's right at the pedestrian crossing along Kallang Road at 7.08am on Aug 15 last year.

The court heard that Mr Chng had already crossed the first lane of the pedestrian crossing when Lu saw him in front and applied his brakes, but it was too late.

The tipper truck collided into the bicycle on its side.

The impact of the collision caused Mr Chng to be flung off his bicycle and he landed on the road with severe head injuries and multiple rib fractures. He died at Tan Tock Seng Hospital at 4.45pm later that day.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Sheryl Yeo said that Lu had stopped the vehicle behind the "stop line'' when he approached the red traffic light cross-junction at Lavender Street by Kallang Road. The tipper truck was the first vehicle in that lane.

When the traffic light turned green, but without a right turn arrow, Lu drove into the junction. He did not stop at the right turning pocket, but instead, made the right turn into Kallang Road without slowing down.

A motorist's CCTV camera partially captured the accident, which showed that the traffic light was "green only'' for Lu and a blinking "green man'' for Mr Chng, which meant that he had the right of way.

DPP Yeo had asked the court to impose at least eight weeks' jail and a disqualification period of five years for Lu after he pleaded guilty.

On Monday (April 24), Lu was sentenced to five weeks' jail and banned from driving for five years for causing Mr Chng's death through his negligence.

Lu, who has been driving a tipper truck for eight years, said through his lawyer that he was deeply remorseful for having caused Mr Chng's death. His lawyer said he checked before making the turn but did not see the deceased.

He could have been jailed for up to two years and/or fined for causing death due to a negligent act.