Man gives first aid to motorcyclist hurt in accident with lorry and bus on PIE

SINGAPORE - Corporate affairs executive Razali Tompang was travelling on the Pan-Island Expressway (PIE) on Monday evening (March 5) when he came across a man lying on the road next to a bus, bleeding and in pain.

He immediately got down from his motorcycle to provide first aid to the man, who appeared to have injuries to his right eye and legs.

Mr Razali, 40, recounted the incident in a post and video on Facebook group SG Road Vigilante on Tuesday and said that the man's first words to him had been: "Bang (an informal word for brother in Malay), please help me to call my boss, tell her I will be late".

The footage was taken from an action camera mounted on his full-face helmet. He removed it and placed it on the road because it would be easier to resuscitate the man if necessary, he said.

He had forgotten to turn the camera off, and it happened to be facing a "good angle", after it was moved by paramedics, he added.

In response to queries, the police said it was alerted to an accident involving a motorcycle, private bus and lorry on the PIE towards Tuas, after the Stevens Road exit, around 6pm.

The motorcyclist, a 35-year-old man, was taken in a conscious state to Tan Tock Seng Hospital. Investigations are ongoing.

In the post, Mr Razali, who is a certified first aider, also took the chance to encourage fellow motorists to learn first-aid skills, so that they are able to help others in emergencies.

Speaking to The Straits Times on Wednesday, Mr Razali said that he was heading back to his Johor Baru home from his workplace in Eunos that evening.

The Malaysian works for a local non-governmental organisation and makes the commute almost daily.

As soon as he saw the accident, he rushed over to the motorcyclist's aid, as he noticed that nobody was attending to him yet.

"There were others at the scene too, including the bus driver, but no one knew what to do to help," said Mr Razali.

To control the bleeding in the man's eye, he took a bandage that he always kept in his bag to wrap it around his head.

He also tried to engage the man in small talk to keep him awake.

Despite his pain, the man was more preoccupied with informing his boss of the accident and notifying her that he would be late, he added.

"When I asked him 'how are you?', the first thing he asked me to do was to call his boss. I ignored him at first, as I was focused on stopping his bleeding," he said.

"But he persisted, and after he asked me the third time, he even took out his phone to call his boss on speed dial."

Mr Razali said he spoke briefly with the man's boss over the phone and reassured him that she was sympathetic to his situation.

He added that he stayed with the man for about five minutes, and left only after the paramedics arrived.

ALDO Warehouse & Transportation, in a statement on Facebook on Monday (March 12), thanked Mr Razali for rendering help to one of its employees, Mr Kartigesu Annamalai, and added that his quick-witted actions had prevented further blood loss and harm.

"Kartigesu Annamalai had shown immense responsibility for his job by informing his superior as soon as (an) issue arose, which will affect his delivery on that day," the statement added. 

The company said that Mr Kartigesu has gone through an operation and it is supporting him in his recovery.

Mr Razali told ST that he decided to upload the video to Facebook only the day after the accident, as he thought it could inspire others to equip themselves with first-aid skills.

The first few minutes after an accident are very crucial for victims, he said, and taking photos and videos without rendering help should not be the norm.

Motorcyclists are also exceptionally vulnerable on the roads, added Mr Razali, who has been riding since he was 18 years old.

"I'm also a rider and pray that if I were to get into an accident one day, someone will help me too. It should be about helping fellow bikers and road users," he said.