SINGAPORE – A six-year-old boy died in hospital on Thursday (May 24) after he was pinned under an SMRT bus while crossing the road in Choa Chu Kang.
The police said they were alerted to the accident involving a bus and a pedestrian in Choa Chu Kang Avenue 5, in the direction of Choa Chu Kang Avenue 4, at about 9am.
The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said that it used lifting equipment to rescue a boy who was trapped under a bus.
The Straits Times understands that the boy was found under the rear wheel of the bus.
He sustained multiple serious injuries and was taken unconscious to National University Hospital, where he later died, said the police.
The bus driver, a 57-year-old man, is assisting the police with investigations.
The boy was on his way to a tuition class with his mother, accompanied by a mother-daughter pair, a friend of the boy’s mother told Chinese-language evening daily Lianhe Wanbao.
Immigration consultant Charlie Lim told The Straits Times that he was driving out of the carpark when he saw the accident in front of Block 486.
“The boy was extracted from below the bus and sent up the ambulance,” said Mr Lim, 44. “There was a lot of blood flowing under the bus.”
He added that the boy’s mother was seen standing next to the bus and appeared to be in a state of shock as she was being comforted by a group of friends and police officers.
SMRT commuters were alerted at 10.15am via the SMRT Connect app that bus service 983 would skip three bus stops along Choa Chu Kang Avenue 5 and 6 due to an accident.
When The Straits Times visited the site at around 2.30pm in the afternoon, buses had resumed their usual routes.
Residents around the area said they would usually not bother to walk to designated pedestrian crossings to make their way across the road as these were too far away.
Ms Nuradillah Jamil, 26, an office administrator, said: “A lot of residents are used to just crossing (like this)... it’s unsafe for children and even for adults.”
Housewife Michelle Lim, 40, said: “The divider (in the middle of the road) is so narrow, so some of the children just stand on it and wait for the buses to pass, then cross the road. I think it’s very dangerous.” Ms Lim said she waits for her 12-year-old son at the bus stop to take him safely home.
SMRT vice-president of corporate communications Margaret Teo said that the transport operator was sorry and sad that the accident had happened.
“Our care team has reached out to the boy’s family at the hospital to provide support and assistance,” she said. “Meanwhile, we are assisting the police in their investigations.”
SMRT also apologised to commuters who were affected.