Driver who killed 4-year-old girl, injured maid in Bukit Batok accident jailed 6 weeks

Wan Ting Koh
Four-year-old Eleanor Tan Si Xuan (seen here with her mother) was killed in the accident while 38-year-old Su Su Hlaing, a Myanmar national, was severely injured. (PHOTO: Facebook/Jacelyn Wong)

The maid was crossing the road at Bukit Batok Central with her employer’s young daughter when both were hit by a car.

Four-year-old Eleanor Tan Si Xuan was killed in the accident while 38-year-old Su Su Hlaing, a Myanmar national, was severely injured.

The driver, 54-year-old Sai Mee Chun, said he had seen the pair crossing the road but was unable to stop in time. His car was travelling at 60kmh at the time, 10kmh above the speed limit.

At the time, Su Su Hlaing and her charge had chosen to jaywalk instead of taking the nearby overhead bridge to cross the four-lane road. They were a few steps shy of the central divider when they were struck.

Sai was jailed six weeks and disqualified from driving for five years on Thursday (6 December) after pleading guilty to one count of committing a negligent act causing the death of Eleanor.

One count of causing grievous hurt to Su Su Hlaing through a negligent act that endangered her life will be taken into consideration for his sentencing.

Currently unemployed, Sai worked as a condominium manager at the time of the incident.

Victims stopped while crossing road

According to court documents, the accident took place at around 6.42pm on 9 October last year along Bukit Batok Central heading in the direction Bukit Batok West Avenue 2.

Su Su Hlaing had just picked up Tan from kindergarten and the pair were making their way home at the time. While crossing the road, they stopped to talk a few steps away from the centre divider, which is when they were hit by Sai’s car.

Both were flung into the air by the impact and landed on the road near the rear of Sai’s car. At the time of the accident, the weather weather was fine, while the road surface was dry with clear visibility and light traffic.

Su Su Hlaing and Tan were taken to Ng Teng Fong General Hospital, where Eleanor was pronounced dead at 7.46pm. Su Su Hlaing suffered fractures in six places along with a forehead laceration and a bruise. She was warded for 18 days.

Accused stopped to render aid

Defence lawyer Choo Yean Lin said in mitigation that Sai – who had been on his way to visit his father at the time – had not seen the pair crossing the road.

“(Sai) saw a dark shadow on his left after he passed the overhead bridge. There were no cars in front of him at the material time,” said the lawyer.

“(Sai) did not see anything and only realised that he had hit something or someone when he heard and felt an impact.”

Choo sought a four-week jail term for Sai, noting that the latter is a first-time offender with a clean driving record stretching back 30 years.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Lee Zu Zhao said that Sai had been speeding when the accident occurred and that there were multiple victims involved – both being aggravating factors.

He also noted that the collision took place along a straight, unobstructed road along which one would expect a high volume of human traffic.

For causing death by committing a negligent act not amounting to culpable homicide, Sai could have been jailed up to two years, and fined or both.

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