SINGAPORE: A mobile crane crashed into a bank branch in Woodlands early Wednesday morning (Feb 24) after the driver lost control while making a turn.
The driver escaped unhurt, according to police officers on the scene. A motorcycle was seen wedged under the vehicle, but no one was injured in the accident, police added.
The 36-year-old male driver was subsequently arrested, the police said, adding that investigations are ongoing.
The mobile crane was making a turn at around 7am when the driver lost control and the vehicle skidded, overturned and smashed into the POSB branch at 2A Woodlands Centre Road, the police said.
(Photo: Kamal Hassan)
When Channel NewsAsia arrived at the scene at around 8am, the overturned mobile crane was still wedged in the wall of the bank. A gaping hole could be seen in the wall.
Residents living above the accident site in the four-storey building have been informed of the situation, the police added.
The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said it received a call about the accident at about 7am. It sent a fire engine and an ambulance to the scene, but there was no one injured so their assistance was not required, SCDF said.
(Photo: Kamal Hassan)
The driver, who was noticeably shaken, told Channel NewsAsia that he was headed to a construction site when the accident happened. He said he was unhurt but that he hit his head on the back of the seat, possibly causing whiplash. He was helped out by two bystanders who opened the vehicle’s door, he said.
Construction worker Kamal Hassan, 49, who was at the scene 10 minutes before the accident happened, said he heard a loud sound and saw the mobile crane overturned. A few motorcycles were crushed under the vehicle, he said.
(Photo: Justin Ong)
“My worry now is whether the second-floor residents are safe. BCA (Building and Construction Authority) needs to inspect the structure," he said.
BUILDING STRUCTURALLY SAFE: BCA
Responding to queries from Channel NewsAsia, BCA on Wednesday said it was alerted to the incident at around 9.15am and its engineers inspected the building together with a professional engineer appointed by the building owner.
The engineers found that the mobile crane had damaged part of the brick wall at the POSB branch and part of an adjoining linkway structure next to the building, BCA said. However, the structural integrity of the building was not affected, it added.
BCA said it has directed the building owner to get its engineer to carry out a detailed investigation and recommend permanent rectification works.
“In the interest of public safety, the affected area which includes the POSB unit and the linkway structure next to the building has been cordoned off while the professional engineer conducts a more detailed investigation and assessment of the incident,” it said.
A DBS spokesperson said that the POSB branch has been closed and the bank is currently assessing the damage.
“Our staff have been assigned to help direct customers to other nearby DBS or POSB branches and self-service banking machines,” he said.
No customers or staff were injured as the accident happened before the branch’s opening hours, the spokesperson added.
WATCH: A mobile crane crashed into a POSB branch in Woodlands early this morning, after the driver lost control of the vehicle. Justin Ong reports.Posted by Channel NewsAsia Singapore on Tuesday, February 23, 2016
According to an eyewitness, the crane was removed around 3.00am on Thursday (Feb 25) after a three-hour recovery operation involving police and Land Transport Authority personnel.