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Worst car accidents in Singapore involving pile ups. What can we learn?





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SINGAPORE - Seven people were injured in an accident along Airport Boulevard on Thursday (Dec 15) night involving six vehicles, including three taxis.” Straits Times, December 16, 2016

Singapore is a fast moving city with over half a million cars on the road. This accident on Airport Boulevard ended with a taxi stuck on top of a black car. 

The road safety team at Budget Direct Insurance asks the question – what can we learn from car accidents that have involved pile ups?

Following these examples, you will find road safety advice to help when driving in Singapore.

Quick facts

  1. Drivers on the Ayer Rajah Expressway (AYE) were stuck in a hug traffic jam after a pile up including a van, six lorries, a car and a trailer. The backlog of traffic took three hours to clear. Witnesses say the accident was precipitated by a car slowing down suddenly and without warning.

    A spokesman for the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said that two people were taken to Ng Teng Fong General Hospital.
  2. A van driver, aged 25 year, was killed on the spot on the Bukit Timah Expressway (BKE) in an accident involving his van, a lorry and a car. The fatal accident happened after the 25 year old driver’s van was involved an earlier pile up. The driver of the lorry, who had fallen asleep at the wheel, was arrested in connection with the accident.
  3. A red Honda being driven the wrong way on the Ayer Rajah Expressway (AYE) resulted in a pile up involving two cars, four taxis, a motorcycle and a lorry. The 62-year-old driver was taken into police custody for questioning.
  4. Two accidents occurred, at the same time, 100 metres from each other on the Pan-Island Expressway (PIE). Each pile up involved eight cars. Five people needed hospital treatment.
Previously, during Chinese New Year, 10 cars were involved in a pile up on the PIE. Four people were taken to hospital this time.

What can we learn?

Driving in fast moving city traffic involves regular, split second decisions. Drivers should be aware of the following:

  1. Giving adequate warning before changing lanes and turning. Other vehicles on the road will need time to adjust to the movement of your car. Use indicators and remember to turn them off after you have completed the maneuver.
  2. Making sure you leave enough reaction time between you and the car in front of you. For approximately every 30kmh of speed, following distance should be two car lengths. If the car in front has to brake suddenly, then you’re less likely to end up in a pile up.
  3. If you need to avoid an obstacle in the road, focus on where you want to go, not what you are trying to avoid. It's difficult to steer away from something when you are looking directly at it. Don’t concentrate on the source of the problem, rather focus on the safest space to steer your car.
  4. Anticipating the road ahead. Braking too late or reactively increases the possibility that a vehicle behind will run into you. As we have seen above, it takes just one bad driver to cause a pile up. If one car brakes hard, the reaction time for vehicles behind decreases exponentially. This means a pile up can occur some distance away from the bad driver.
  5. If traffic is slowing, alert the vehicles by applying the brakes early, progressively and smoothly.
  6. Watch out for the other guy. Lorries, vans, buses, taxis, cars and motorcycle riders all have varying pressures and time restraints that affect the way they drive. Keep an eye out for the unexpected. It’s all about anticipating the road ahead
  7. Never drive when tired, or under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

More road safety advice here

Distracted driving. The cost and 6 ways to stay safe

Driving in snow. Winter driving tips to keep you safe

Child seatbelts. Number 3 may be a life saver

Safe driving, regular car checks and maintenance are sure-fire ways to ensure that you and your car have a great future together.

Budget Direct Insurance
No-Nonsense, money saving cover for your car