Cars stop, and help arrives for blind pedestrian at traffic junction

A driver helps Mr Hung Kie Tong, a blind pedrestrian, across the road at Toa Payoh Rise.
A driver helps Mr Hung Kie Tong, a blind pedrestrian, across the road at Toa Payoh Rise.SCREENGRAB: FACEBOOK/BEH CHIA LOR

SINGAPORE - It's a video that has warmed the hearts of all who have watched it - and it has chalked up some 30,000 views after it was posted on Facebook on Thursday (Sept 15).

A blind pedestrian with a white cane walks across the road hesitantly but the traffic lights are glowing green for the oncoming cars.

The incident at Toa Payoh Rise happened at about 7.10am on Thursday, according to the time stamp on the video.

The pedestrian, Mr Hung Kie Tong, is blind and intellectually challenged.

He was likely crossing the road to get to work at the Singapore Association of the Visually Impaired (SAVH), said Ms Dolores Bailey, public relations executive at SAVH.

Mr Hung, who is in his 40s, is a Bizlink trainee and reports to the centre at Toa Payoh Rise five days a week for work. Non-profit organisation Bizlink provides employment services for people with disabilities.

Usually there are volunteers or, like in this case, good Samaritans who help them, said Ms Bailey.

The video shows the cars have the right of way, but they slow down and stop for Mr Hung. He hesitates after a few steps, perhaps sensing that there are cars all around him.

Then the driver of one of the cars comes over and holds his shoulder, guiding him across the road as other cars stop for them.

The driver of a silver car also gets out at one point, but returns to the car when he sees that someone is helping Mr Hung.

The video, submitted by Mr Edmund Tee, was posted on road safety site Beh Chia Lor at about noon.

One netizen, Clarence Tey, commented that he often spots visually impaired people in the vicinity, and added: "Drive slow and aid them if you can."

Ms Bailey said that those who drive in the area often will "know our guys".

"Blind people are some of the most vulnerable, especially when their condition is compounded by other disabilities," she said. "It was a magnanimous gesture."

She added that the pedestrian crossing there has a longer waiting time and tactile strips to help the blind cross. There is also a beeping sound when the light changes.