E-scooter rider pleads guilty to causing death of elderly cyclist in Bedok

Hung Kee Boon (right) was riding an e-scooter when he collided with Madam Ong Bee Eng, who was riding her bicycle at the time. PHOTOS: MR NG CHIN KAI, KELVIN CHNG

SINGAPORE - A man speeding on a non-compliant e-scooter collided with an elderly cyclist in Bedok in 2019. The victim, who was flung to the ground, later died from her injuries.

Malaysian Hung Kee Boon, 22, pleaded guilty on Tuesday (May 4) to causing the
death of Madam Ong Bee Eng, 64, by performing a rash act.

The Singapore permanent resident also admitted to one count of riding a non-compliant personal mobility device (PMD) on a public path, an offence under the Active Mobility Act.

Another charge for riding an unregistered PMD on a public path will be taken into consideration by Principal District Judge Victor Yeo during sentencing.
The incident happened at around 10.20pm on Sept 21, 2019.

Hung was riding an e-scooter on a cycling path near Block 539 Bedok North Street 3, at a speed estimated to be between 27kmh and 43kmh. The speed limit on cycling paths is 25kmh.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Dillon Kok said Hung did not reduce his speed despite encountering rumble strips, which are raised grooves to indicate potential hazards and alert riders to slow down.

Madam Ong was at the time riding her bicycle perpendicularly across the path towards a nearby zebra crossing.

The court heard that Hung noticed the logistics assistant packer entering the path despite his view being partly obscured by a lighted signboard. But he failed to stop in time because of the speed he was travelling at, and the front of his e-scooter collided with Madam Ong's bicycle.

She was flung to the ground, where passers-by who had rushed to the scene found her unconscious and bleeding from her head.

Hung and Madam Ong were taken to the hospital, where she was found to have suffered various injuries, including to her brain, ribs and face. She fell into a coma and died four days later.

On Tuesday, DPP Kok urged the court to jail Hung for at least three months. Among other things, the DPP noted that Hung's e-scooter was "grossly non-compliant". Its weight, maximum speed and width exceeded the restrictions imposed on PMDs under the law.

Madam Ong Bee Eng collided with the e-scooter (right) while riding her bicycle in Bedok on Sept 21, 2019. PHOTOS: SHIN MIN DAILY NEWS

DPP Kok also said that Hung had bought the e-scooter in October 2018, "well after the restrictions... came into force on May 1, 2018".

"This means that the accused was fully aware at the time of purchase that the e-scooter was non-compliant and cannot be used on public paths," he added.

Defence lawyers Ng Shi Yang and Kimberley Pah, who are representing Hung pro bono, asked the court to call for a report assessing their client's suitability for probation.

Hung is expected to be sentenced on May 20.

For causing Madam Ong's death by a rash act, Hung can be jailed for up to five years, or fined, or both.

For riding a non-compliant PMD on a public path, offenders can be jailed for up to three months, or fined up to $5,000, or both.

Correction note: In an earlier version of this article, it was stated that the collision occurred last year. It occurred in 2019 instead. We are sorry for the error.

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