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Man charged with causing death of ACS(I) student during high-element rope course at SAFRA Yishun

The 15-year-old student died from multi-organ failure and traumatic asphyxia following the incident during an ACS (Independent) camp programme in February 2021.

Man charged with causing death of ACS(I) student during high-element rope course at SAFRA Yishun

General view of SAFRA Yishun on Feb 4, 2021. (Photo: Marcus Mark Ramos)

SINGAPORE: A man has been charged in relation to the death of a 15-year-old student who died in February last year after an incident during a school camp.

Muhammad Nurul Hakim Mohamed Din, 22, was handed one charge on Thursday (Sep 15) for causing the death of 15-year-old Puah Xin Yang Jethro at about 1.25pm on Feb 3, 2021, at the SAFRA Adventure Sports Centre in Yishun.

According to his charge, he committed a rash act not amounting to culpable homicide by illegally omitting to ensure that both of the leg straps of Jethro's safety harness were properly buckled and adjusted before dispatching Jethro onto the rope course.

As a result, Jethro died from multi-organ failure following compression of his neck, and traumatic asphyxia. According to the charge sheet, Jethro was suspended in the loose harness after he fell off the rope course and his leg straps became completely unbuckled.

Muhammad Nurul Hakim was the dispatcher of the Canopy Sky Walk rope course at the time. Past reports state that the activity was organised by outdoor adventure learning company Camelot.

The accused, who did not make any indication of how he would plead, is defended by lawyer Azri Imran Tan. Mr Tan asked for bail and time to take instructions from his client.

In a statement in February last year, SAFRA Yishun described the incident as a "mishap" and said that the student was part of an ACS (Independent) camp programme.

The police previously said that Jethro had lost his footing while participating in the high-element course, but was "suspended by the safety harness and subsequently lost consciousness when he was lowered to the ground".

The boy was unresponsive when paramedics arrived and performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation. He died in hospital the next day.

The Ministry of Education (MOE) and ACS(I) said in a joint statement after the incident that they were greatly saddened by the student's passing.

After the incident, all schools suspended outdoor activities involving high elements.

In response to CNA's queries on Thursday, MOE said that all height-based outdoor adventure learning activities remain suspended. 
"MOE will look into developments related to the case, before working towards a resumption of height-based outdoor adventure learning activities," it said, adding that more details will be announced when ready.

If convicted of causing death by a rash act, the accused could be jailed for up to five years, fined, or both.

He was offered bail of S$10,000 and will return to court next month.

Source: CNA/ll(zl)


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