Thai teen vs SMRT, LTA: Safety is a shared responsibility says defence counsel

The plaintiff has not proven that SMRT and the Land Transport Authority of Singapore (LTA) have breached their duty of care which resulted in the injury incurred by Thai teenager, Nitcharee Peneakchanasak.

Safety is a shared responsibility and Nitcharee has to be responsible for her own safety too. She was aware of the danger of the oncoming train, said the defendants' lawyer Mr K. Anparasan. By standing behind the yellow safety line until the train had stopped, she would have been sufficiently and reasonably safe from falling onto the tracks at Ang Mo Kio MRT station, he said in his closing submissions on Monday morning.

Responding to the teen's lawyer's claims that interim barriers could have prevented the tragedy, Mr Anparasan reinforced that Ang Mo Kio MRT station has adequate safety measures and it was reasonably safe at the time of the accident. The erection of interim barriers was impractical, as it will introduce new safety hazards to the MRT station, said Mr Anparasan.

Mr Anparasan also revealed that there were about two to three accidental falls onto the tracks every year, and it was considered "tolerable" with thousands of commuters taking the trains every day. But Judicial Commissioner Vinodh Coomaraswamy said that the rate was not acceptable for people who have been injured in such accidents. The judge has reserved his judgement for a later date.