SINGAPORE: A part-time Foodpanda rider who was making a pizza delivery had lifted his hands off the handlebars of his bicycle to reply to an Instagram message before colliding into a 60-year-old woman, who later died in hospital.
For causing the death of Poh Cho Hui by a negligent act not amounting to culpable homicide, 19-year-old Muhammad Adli Adi was jailed for two weeks on Friday (Nov 1).
The court heard that Adli, then 17, was delivering food to a location in Pasir Ris at about 8pm on Jun 8 last year.
He was cycling along the Tampines Park Connector at about 23kmh, according to investigations based on police camera footage, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Sanjiv Vaswani.
As a delivery rider, he had to transport food from vendors to customers within a 3km radius in 20 minutes.
While he was cycling along the shared path, Adli received a notification on his phone about an Instagram post.
He took out his phone and used both hands to reply to the message. An eyewitness saw him continuing to cycle without his hands on the handlebars, according to court documents.
After replying the message, Adli slipped his phone into his pocket and looked up.
He saw the victim very close in front of him but was unable to avoid hitting her.
His bicycle collided into the jogger, and both Adli and the victim fell.
The woman lay on her back on the pavement after the collision, said the prosecution. Several passers-by attended to her, but she was unresponsive and bleeding from the back of her head.
She was taken to Changi General Hospital with multiple fractures and severe traumatic brain injury.
She died the next day on Jun 9, 2018, with the cause of death certified as a head injury.
Adli was arrested and his bicycle seized for investigations. It was found to be in good working condition, but did not have any front headlights fitted on it.
Adli pleaded guilty to one count of causing Mdm Poh's death by a negligent act, with a second charge taken into consideration.
He admitted that he had failed to keep a proper lookout while riding his bicycle on a path shared by cyclists and pedestrians.
The prosecution had pushed for three weeks' jail, saying that Adli had replied to a message on Instagram instead of riding carefully, directly attributing his failure to keep a proper lookout for path users to this act.
Adli had also flouted another traffic rule by riding at night without a front headlight, which could have served as a warning to other path users.
The shared path had a maximum speed limit of 25kmh, and Adli was riding was close to that limit, noted the prosecutor, adding that the Wilier Velodromo bicycle he was on was a fixed-gear model and did not have a manual braking system.
After the accident, Adli also appeared more concerned about not being able to complete his pizza delivery rather than the welfare of the victim, said the prosecution, referring to screenshots of Adli's messages on Instagram.
Adli could have been jailed for up to two years, fined, or both.