Monday, February 02, 2009

Darwin Award candidate

Something should be done about dangerous barriers

I WISH to highlight the dangerous crossing for pedestrians walking to Thomson Plaza from Jasmine Road.

There is a side road at Thomson Plaza, near the Starbucks outlet. It has four lanes, one for cars and taxis to enter, one for cars to exit the carpark, and two for trade vehicles to enter and exit the delivery area.

There are two barriers across the lanes for trade vehicles and a zebra crossing across the other two lanes. As the traffic there can be heavy, most people use the zebra crossing. But one must negotiate the lanes for trade vehicles before reaching the crossing.

Recently, as I was walking to Thomson Plaza, I decided to go through the lanes for trade vehicles to get to the zebra crossing. One barrier was down while the other was up. It was about 1pm and there were no security guards stationed there. As I walked between the two barriers, one came down and hit my head.

I stumbled into Thomson Plaza for help and sought medical attention at a clinic. The doctor who attended to me told me that she too had been hit by the barrier, but that her umbrella had shielded her from the blow.

I wrote to the mall's management on Dec 21, five days after the accident, to ask them to rectify the problem. I have not received a reply.

Clarice Tan (Mrs)

(STI online Forum, 2 February 2009)



The injury to your head must have been quite serious for you to be raising via the local dailies this oversight of due diligence. One possible countermeasure to prevent a repeat occurrence of this eventuality is to avoid walking under raised barriers altogether. This simple and basic precaution has saved thousands of heads from similar Blunt Force Trauma attempts committed by such wayward barriers as you have had the misfortune to encounter, and millions of dollars in medical fees thereafter.

You raise a legitimate concern regarding the lack of security guards stationed at the barriers. The emergence of sensor-equipped automatic barriers has completely eradicated the need for a manual labourer to perform this operation, forcing yet another uncle to undergo retraining in order to find alternative employment. Perhaps you'll be good enough and employ one to hold an umbrella above your head while you go strolling to the mall from now on?

Nevertheless, we must make allowances for some people who insist on swimming in the crocodile pond even after seeing the lifeguard on duty being devoured. To them, we present an award for thinning the gene pool, hence making the future safer for our descendants.

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