More fatal road accidents in Singapore in 2023, police to raise demerit points for certain offences

More red-light running, speeding and drink-driving incidents, with elderly pedestrians and motorcyclists "most vulnerable"

A traffic road accident (Photo: Getty Images)
A traffic road accident (Photo: Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — Fatal traffic accidents are on a worrying rise, claiming 136 lives in 2023, which is a 25.9 per cent increase from the 108 deaths recorded in 2022, said the Traffic Police (TP) in its annual road traffic situation report on Tuesday (20 February).

The police also noted a significant increase in the number of accidents where motorists failed to keep a proper lookout, have proper control of the vehicle, and changed lanes without due care.

To tackle this, TP will be increasing the composition sums and demerit points for certain traffic offences. More details will be announced later this year.

Traffic accidents resulting in injuries also increased from 6,779 cases in 2022 to 6,944 cases in 2023. There were 8,931 casualties in 2023, a 5.8 per cent increase compared to 8,441 people in 2022.

"We are naturally concerned with the increase in road fatalities over the past two years," TP commander Daniel Tan said on Tuesday.

“Of note are the motorcyclists, their pillion riders and elderly pedestrians who make up the most vulnerable group of road users. As such, TP is going to enhance our enforcement methods. We will be rolling out the speed enforcement function in our red light cameras, starting from next quarter. We will come down hard on road users who blatantly disregard the law.”

More fatal red-light running, speeding and drink-driving accidents

The annual report highlighted an increase in the number fatal accidents involving red-light running, speeding and drink-driving from 2022 to 2023:

  • Red-light running fatal accidents: 3 to 8 cases;

  • Speeding-related fatal accidents: 18 to 33 cases;

  • Drink-driving accidents: 175 to 180 cases;

  • Fatal drink-driving accidents: 10 to 11 cases.

However, the number of red-light running and speeding violations, as well as red-light running and speeding-related accidents decreased from 2022 to 2023.

  • Red-light running violations: 44,688 to 31,815 cases (28.8 per cent);

  • Speeding violations:125,530 to 115,705 cases (7.8 per cent);

  • Red-light running accidents: 137 to 112 cases (18.2 per cent);

  • Speeding-related accidents: 1,138 to 624 cases (45.2 per cent).

2023 traffic accident statistics in Singapore (Photo: SPF)
2023 traffic accident statistics in Singapore (Photo: SPF)

More elderly accidents, and more fatal motorcyclists and pillion rider accidents

Although motorcycles make up only 14.4 per cent of the total vehicle population in Singapore, motorcyclists and pillion riders accounted for half of all road fatalities last year.

Meanwhile, the elderly, which makes up 19.1 per cent of the population, were involved in 68.4 per cent of all fatal pedestrian traffic accidents, and accounted for 69.2 per cent of pedestrian fatalities.

"Motorcyclists and elderly pedestrians are the most vulnerable groups of road users, and continue to account for a disproportionate number of traffic accidents resulting in injuries or death," said the police.

2023 statistics on traffic accidents involving elderly pedestrians and motorcyclists or pillion riders in Singapore (Photo: SPF)
2023 statistics on traffic accidents involving elderly pedestrians and motorcyclists or pillion riders in Singapore (Photo: SPF)

More enforcement, speed enforcement function in Red Light Cameras to be activated

While violation cases detected by traffic enforcement cameras decreased last year, cases detected by other police enforcement operations increased by 22 per cent - from 52,016 in 2022 to 63,468 cases in 2023.

Speeding-related fatal accidents also increased by 83.3 per cent, while fatal accidents due to speeding increased from 17.3 per cent in 2022 to 25.2 per cent in 2023.

In response, the police will roll out the speed enforcement function in red light cameras (RLCs) starting next quarter, especially at "more accident or violation-prone" locations. The list of RLCs and their locations can be found on the SPF website.

The current penalty for running a red light is 12 demerit points, and a fine of $400 or $500 for light and heavy vehicles respectively. A drink-driving offence can result in a fine up to $10,000, and a jail term up to a year.

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