Driver caused nine-vehicle pile-up on PIE

He braked to make rude gesture, causing crash that killed motorcyclist

Pang Chon Seng's actions caused three chain collisions involving nine vehicles.
Pang Chon Seng's actions caused three chain collisions involving nine vehicles. ST PHOTO: WONG KWAI CHOW

Story updated June 4, 2015

HE BRAKED on the expressway to make a rude hand gesture at a stranger - and caused a nine- vehicle pile-up that killed a motorcyclist.

Workshop manager Pang Chon Seng, 52, was sentenced yesterday to four months' jail for driving dangerously on the Pan-Island Expressway (PIE) on June 19 last year.

Pang had been driving his Toyota Wish to work before 7am, when he started swerving from lane to lane in order to harass motorcyclist Johann Johari Nazir. The 31-year-old, whose wife was with him on the pillion seat, felt Pang was driving dangerously close to him and stopped at the road shoulder near Toh Guan Road.

Pang then braked suddenly to hold up both his middle fingers to Mr Johann. This forced the driver of a prime mover directly behind Pang to slam on the brakes.

Lorry driver Lim Kok Aun, 48, who was travelling behind the prime mover, also braked hard but his lorry veered to the right and spun into the path of motorcyclist Liow Yong Seng.

Unable to stop in time, 35-year-old Mr Liow crashed into the lorry with such force that his motorcycle broke into two and was flung across the PIE. He was found dead under the lorry.

Nine vehicles were involved in the accident, which unfolded as three separate chain collisions.

Meanwhile, Pang drove off.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Rachel Lee said Pang had "deliberately chosen to persist in a continuous and prolonged dangerous manner of driving".

Pang's lawyer, Mr Louis Joseph, said his client had gone after Mr Johann because he thought he saw someone on a motorcycle taking photographs of him and wanted to get a closer look.

DPP Lee responded that investigations had found no evidence of these photographs, and that even if it had been the case, Pang's reaction was still disproportionate.

Meanwhile, Lim was fined $7,000 for his part in Mr Liow's death. The prosecution argued that he had failed to keep a safe distance from the prime mover or watch the road, contributing to the accident.

Both Pang and Lim were also disqualified from driving for four years, starting yesterday.

For his reckless driving, Pang could have been jailed for up to 12 months and/or fined up to $3,000. Lim's negligence could have been punished by up to two years in jail, a fine, or both.


Additional reporting by Miranda Yeo

An earlier version of this story said that Lim Kok Aun was jailed for four weeks and fined $7,000. We are sorry for the error.

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