Mailbox: Lack of safety coverage at cycling event

Mailbox: Lack of safety coverage at cycling event
The vast majority of cyclists enjoyed an incident-free event but issues have been raised by some participants.

I participated in the OCBC Cycle Singapore event on Sunday ("Cycle safety in spotlight"; yesterday).

While cycling down the slope at the Benjamin Sheares Bridge, I saw an injured woman lying in the middle of the road being assisted by another cyclist.

There was a pool of blood beside her head and she appeared dazed but conscious.

My friends and I stopped to help. The cyclist tending to her said he had called the organisers 15 minutes earlier and was waiting for medical assistance.

Not long after that, two more accidents occurred farther down the slope. One of the victims suffered a head injury and appeared very dazed.

A cyclist who was a doctor stopped to help but the lack of support meant there was nothing much that could be done.

There were no event marshals in sight and some cyclists had to go and look for them. Neither was there any safety vehicle.

A Cisco officer who arrived later had to ask his colleague to find the organisers because he could not contact them using his walkie-talkie.

Finally, about 55 minutes after we first called for help, a medic on a motorcycle arrived and called for an ambulance.

The long response time is unacceptable. There seemed to be a gross underestimation of the safety coverage that was needed.

The event organisers owe participants an explanation.

Ang Beng Hwei

This article was published on April 2 in The Straits Times.

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