Penang 'wrong way' crash: Teen was hallucinating, say police

MOHAMED BASYIR




BUKIT MERTAJAM: Police believe that the teenage girl who drove against traffic flow along the North-South Expressway yesterday, which led to a fatal accident, was 'hallucinating' at the time.


This was based on the interrogation session conducted with the teen, who tested positive for amphetamine use when arrested.


Seberang Prai Tengah district police chief Assistant Commissioner Nik Ros Azhan Nik Abdul Hamid said the teenager told policemen that she had initially missed her turn heading home, at the Permatang Pauh intersection, and had headed straight to the Sungai Dua toll plaza.


"She claimed that as she was approaching the toll, about 100m away, she saw a lorry in front of her.


"She said this prompted her to make an immediate U-turn from the middle lane to the right lane, south-bound on the same road.


"There, she swiped three vehicles, and headed straight on the opposite lane, against traffic, for about five kilometres.


"That was when her Proton Gen 2 crashed into the Perodua Kelisa driven by Mohamad Fandi Rosli, 26, who died in the accident," he told reporters here today.


Nik Ros Azhan said checks on the closed-circuit television camera footage near the Sungai Dua toll did not show the presence of any lorry, which indicated that the woman was hallucinating.


Further investigations also revealed that she was out clubbing with her friends earlier before heading back home.


Nik Ros Azhan said urine tests showed that she had amphetamines in her system. However, no drugs were found inside her car.


"We will identify and summon her friends to record their statements to identify the source of the drug.


"So far, eight statements have been recorded, including from witnesses at the scene," he added.


The case is being investigated under Section 44 of the Road Transport Department Act and Section 15(1) of the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952.


There have been calls for the case to be reclassified to Section 304 of the Penal Code for causing death by negligence.


Nik Ros Azhan said Section 44 carries a heavier penalty of jail term between four to 10 years while Section 304 carries only a two-year jail term.