Driver in Tampines fatal crash handed four charges, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

Driver in Tampines fatal crash handed four charges

The car driver allegedly involved in a fatal six-vehicle crash in Tampines that killed two people has been handed four charges.

Muhammad Syafie Ismail, 42, was charged on April 25 with dangerous driving causing death, dangerous driving causing hurt and reckless driving.

He was also charged with failing to stop after an accident.

The prosecution said additional charges may be tendered to Syafie, and sought an adjournment for investigations to be completed and for a medical report to be ready.

Syafie was offered bail of $30,000. As part of his bail conditions, he must not have contact with any of the prosecution witnesses and must report to the investigation officer when required.

He must also be electronically tagged.

The prosecution said he should be monitored with an electronic tag due to the serious charges he is facing, and noted he could be a flight risk.

In response, Syafie said: “I don’t think it’s necessary to put an e-tag on me as all my documents, my passport, have been seized by the police. I’m on bail and am already present today and will be present for all the court matters.

“But it is up to the court to make the decision.”

Syafie arrived at the State Courts at around 8.30am with his arm in a sling. He was escorted by the police and Aetos officers.

His case began at around 10am and he was expressionless as he stood before the judge.

When the judge asked him if he wished to say anything, Syafie said he will be engaging a lawyer.

According to charge sheets, Syafie allegedly failed to conform to the red traffic light which resulted in his car colliding into two cars, before surging forward to collide into another car.

Meanwhile, the first car Syafie collided into spun before overturning and this caused it to collide with a van.

The van then collided into a minibus.

This allegedly caused the death of Madam Norzihan Juwahib, 58, and Afifah Munirah Muhammad Azril, 17.

Charge sheets also stated Syafie’s driving allegedly injured Ms Lee Yau Meng, 42; Mr Wang Haifeng, 42; Mr Chia Tong Chai, 64; and Mr Mohammad Azman Mohd Enjah, 39.

Two 11-year-old boys were also injured in the accident.

Those convicted of dangerous driving causing death can be jailed between two and eight years and be disqualified from driving.

The offence of dangerous driving causing hurt carries a penalty of up to two years’ jail, a fine of up to $10,000, or both.

On Syafie’s reckless driving charge, court documents stated that Syafie drove his car recklessly by making an abrupt lane change from lane two to lane one of a two-lane road to overtake another car.

Syafie also filtered back “acutely” into lane two in front of the other car, resulting in a side-swipe collision, causing the car to veer to the left and its left tyres to graze the kerb.

He then allegedly failed to stop after this, despite being required to do so after an accident.

A bail review for Syafie was scheduled on April 26, while a pre-trial conference will take place on June 7.

Syafie was arrested on April 24 after being discharged from hospital. His driving licence was suspended with immediate effect.

The police said investigations are ongoing for other potential offences.

The crash involving four cars, a van and a minibus occurred on April 22 at the junction of Tampines Avenue 1 and Tampines Avenue 4.

Madam Norzihan and Afifah, who died following the accident, were both buried at Choa Chu Kang Muslim Cemetery on April 23.

Madam Norzihan was a passenger in the van on her way to work when the accident occurred. The right side of the vehicle was badly dented.

She was a senior technician at pest control firm First Choice Pest Specialist and had worked there for around 10 years.

Afifah, a first-year student at Temasek Junior College, was a car passenger on the way to take part in her school’s annual cross-country event.

Her father, Mr Muhammad Azril, a Police Coast Guard officer, was driving their car when the impact from the collision caused it to turn turtle with its doors flung open.

He was taken to hospital and suffered kidney- and spine-related injuries.

Five other people, including two 11-year-old boys, were also taken to hospital.

The offence of reckless driving carries a jail term of up to a year, a fine of up to $5,000, or both.

For failing to stop after an accident, an offender can be fined up to $1,000, jailed up to three months, or both.