Friday August 24, 2007
Pothole that cost a life
By TEH ENG HOCK
Tan Cheng Ming, 20, was riding pillion on a motorcycle last Friday at 4am when the machine hit a pothole that was about as wide as a manhole and 5cm deep.
The impact caused Cheng Ming to be thrown off the motorcycle, and he sustained head injuries upon landing. He was rushed to the Sultan Ismail Hospital but died there.
His friend, Tam Tok Wei, 20, who was driving, escaped with minor injuries while the motorcycle was barely damaged except for some scratches and a bent front wheel.
Cheng Ming’s father, Robin Tan, said the Johor Baru City Council (MBJB) patched up the pothole in Jalan Daya, Taman Daya, about two days after the accident.
“When there is a loss of life, only then will they act. We have to bring this up to the authorities, because we don’t want others to lose their loved ones, too.
“The street lights along that road are also not so bright as they are shaded by trees, so the rider might not have seen the pothole at night,” Tan told The Star.
The 53-year-old taxi driver said that with the exception of highways, many roads in Johor Baru are riddled with potholes.
Tan said they had started planning for Cheng Ming’s 21st birthday celebration next month when the accident occurred.
“Twenty years of love, and just like that, because of other people’s mistake, my son paid with his life,” he said.