Lankan jailed in Singapore over accident

A Sri Lankan national has been jailed in Singapore over an accident last year which killed one person and injured two others, the Straits Times reported today.

The jet-lagged driver’s car mounted a pavement and killed a grandmother after he apparently dozed off while at the wheel.

Engineer Singarayar Cleetruse Geethan, 32, also hit three members of her family, injuring two of them in the accident in Woodlands Drive 14.

His lawyer, Louis Joseph, pleading for a light sentence, said Geethan had just returned from Sri Lanka and his flight had landed at 5.30am that day. He added that his client was suffering from fatigue and jet lag and probably dozed off while driving.

The Sri Lankan national, a permanent resident, had admitted driving negligently and causing the death of housewife Gwee Ham Siau and injuring her daughter-in-law, Hasmidah Ho Bee Keng, and grandson Oh Wei Jie.

Madam Gwee, 64, suffered head and chest injuries, and died in Khoo Teck Puat Hospital two hours later. Ho, 34, suffered a fractured right foot, while the boy, seven, fractured his left leg.

A district court heard that Geethan was driving home from work at about 5.45pm on June 20 last year when his car mounted the pavement and hit the four pedestrians.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Navindraram Naidu argued for a jail term of four to six weeks.

Agreeing, District Judge Tan Boon Heng said he had caused the death of an innocent victim and injured two others.

He could have been jailed for up to two years, fined up to $10,000 or both for causing death by driving negligently.