SINGAPORE — A former security officer’s oversight while he was on duty to facilitate the entry of vehicles at the Istana led to an accident that injured the permanent secretary of Singapore’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Tan Chee Kiat, 29, was on Wednesday (31 August) fined $2,500 for raising the bollards along a road prematurely when a car crashed into them, according to local media reports. His duty was to ensure that a vehicle had passed through before activating the barriers.
The accident happened on the morning of the visit of US Vice President Kamala Harris to the Istana.
As a result of the accident, the permanent secretary, Chee Wee Kiong, was hospitalised for two days and had multiple fractures including sternum and tooth fractures.
The accident took place on Edinburgh Road within the Istana. Tan, who was deployed at a security post along the road, was operating the control panel for the bollards, which rise from the ground to block road access when activated.
Chee and a driver were in the car, which had cleared security and was travelling at 10kmh. Tan failed to check the car had passed the bollards when he raised them.
The driver saw the bollards being raised but he could not stop the car in time to avoid a collision.
The court was told by the defence that Tan was fired following the incident and was currently unemployed.
Tan could have been jailed up to two years or faced a maximum fine of $5,000, or both, for causing grievous hurt through a negligent act that endangers human life or personal safety.
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