Delivery rider dashes to rescue driver trapped in toppled van

A GrabFood delivery rider has been lauded for his role in rescuing an elderly motorist from a van that was left flipped on its side following a traffic accident.

The rider, who was identified as Mr Muhammad Riau Alfian, climbed onto the side of the flipped van to rescue the trapped driver.

Police said they were alerted to an accident involving a lorry and a van at the junction of Jalan Boon Lay and Boon Lay Way at 10am last Saturday.

The driver of the van was conscious when he was taken to Ng Teng Fong General Hospital, said the police, who are investigating the accident.

The man, who is believed to be in his 70s, was trapped when the van flipped on its side after it collided with a vehicle from a cleaning company, reported Chinese-language evening daily Lianhe Wanbao.

A Facebook user, going by the name Ryan Hiroshi, posted several videos taken at the scene. They showed the van overturned on its side, and the delivery rider - a man in his 20s who was using a personal mobility device - tossing his PMD and delivery bag aside to climb onto the toppled Toyota Dyna van, to help the elderly driver out.

The videos have been making the rounds on social media.

Several members of the public at the scene also offered assistance.

In several video clips that captured the rescue, GrabFood rider Muhammad Riau Alfian was seen pulling an elderly man out of a lorry that had turned on its side before paramedics arrived. PHOTO: RYAN HIROSHI/ FACEBOOK

When contacted by Stomp, Ryan said: "Before I started filming, the heroic rider was using his own hand to try and break the van's side window so that he could free the driver.

"He wrapped his fist with a cloth and tried to break open the window, but to no avail.

"Fortunately, a construction worker at the scene passed the rider a crowbar and he managed to break the window in one blow.

"It's heartwarming to see fellow Singaporeans going all out to save a trapped elderly driver."

In his Facebook post, Ryan also commended the GrabFood deliveryman's actions and said: "Not all PMD riders are bad apples. Some are life-savers too."

He told Stomp: "All this while, we've been hearing negative comments about PMD riders. But hey, there are still kind souls around.

"This incident is a good example of how one PMD rider did his best to help another fellow human at the expense of his own time.

"I hope that sharing these videos will help to spread awareness about how road safety is a shared responsibility and show why we should not generalise all PMD riders as bad apples."

The Facebook post has received positive reactions from social media users who praised the GrabFood rider for his actions.

Many called him a "superhero".

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 13, 2019, with the headline 'Delivery rider dashes to rescue driver trapped in toppled van'. Print Edition | Subscribe