Nearly 300 treated at hospitals for PMD-related accidents last year; 1 in 6 had severe injuries

While the number of people hurt in accidents involving bicycles, cars and motorcycles is higher, PMD accidents lead to proportionately more severe injuries.
While the number of people hurt in accidents involving bicycles, cars and motorcycles is higher, PMD accidents lead to proportionately more severe injuries.ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG

Almost 300 people were treated last year at hospitals for accidents related to personal mobility devices (PMDs), with about a sixth of the injuries being severe.

While the number of people hurt in accidents involving bicycles, cars and motorcycles is higher, PMD accidents lead to proportionately more severe injuries, according to data from the National Trauma Registry.

Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan revealed the figures in a written answer to Nominated MP Walter Theseira in Parliament yesterday.

Associate Professor Theseira had asked how many people have been treated at the accident and emergency departments of public hospitals for injuries resulting from PMD accidents since last year.

He also asked for a comparison of the accident and injury rate of PMDs relative to other forms of transport.

Mr Khaw said there were 299 people treated at hospitals for PMD-related incidents last year, including 259 riders and eight pedestrians. Other injured parties include cyclists.

About 63 per cent of the injuries in these accidents were minor, 21 per cent were moderate and 16 per cent were severe, said Mr Khaw.

Over the same period, 1,836 people were treated at hospitals for injuries from bicycle-related accidents, 5,700 for motorcycle-related accidents and 6,743 for car-related accidents.

Across these three categories, about 89 per cent of the injuries were considered minor, 7 per cent were moderate and 4 per cent were severe.

"We are unable to make an international comparison of PMD-related injuries due to a lack of such published data," Mr Khaw added.

 
 

Of late, PMD-related injuries have become a concern.

Tan Tock Seng Hospital reported last month that it is seeing a spike in injuries involving PMD riders. Meanwhile, a national study completed earlier this year found there was twice the risk of hospitalisation as a result of injuries when using powered PMDs, compared with manual devices.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 06, 2019, with the headline 'Nearly 300 treated at hospitals for PMD-related accidents last year; 1 in 6 had severe injuries'. Print Edition | Subscribe