Prime Mover Truck Falls Into Sea At Keppel Terminal, 44-Year-Old Driver Passes Away

Prime Mover Driver Passes Away After Truck Falls Off Keppel Terminal Pier On 31 Jan

A prime mover driver passed away early this morning (31 Jan) after his vehicle fell into the sea at Keppel Terminal.

Source: Andrew Ker on Flickr

He was pronounced dead at the scene after the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) recovered his body.

Investigations into the incident are ongoing.

Prime mover truck falls off pier into sea

According to The Straits Times (ST), the police received a call for assistance at 1.45am at 101 Keppel Road on Tuesday (31 Jan).

The SCDF likewise received a call at the same time, and both forces responded immediately.

In a media release the same day, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) stated that the Marine Safety Control Centre received an alert regarding the incident at about 2am.

They promptly deployed a patrol craft to set up a cordon to assist in operations.

The MPA noted that the incident didn’t affect traffic movement in port waters. Investigations are ongoing on their part.

DART divers retrieve body of driver at Keppel Terminal

In response to MS News’ queries, the SCDF shared that they saw a trailer at the edge of a shipping berth upon arrival.

The prime mover attached to it, however, “had fallen into the sea and was fully submerged”.

Before proceeding with their duties, they received assistance from PSA to secure the trailer and stop it from moving.

Divers from the Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (DART) then conducted an underwater search.

They retrieved the body from the cabin of the prime mover at a depth of about 14 metres.

An SCDF paramedic pronounced the driver dead at the scene.

Further investigations ongoing

Both ST and CNA noted that the driver is a 44-year-old man and that the police don’t suspect foul play following preliminary investigations.

Further police investigations are ongoing.

A PSA spokesperson told MS News that the incident happened at 1.20am. They will be providing support to the driver’s family.

Here’s their statement in full:

On 31 Jan 2023 at about 1.20am, PSA Singapore was informed of an incident involving a prime mover at Keppel Terminal (KT). The prime mover, with the driver in the vehicle, had fallen into the sea at a KT berth. The Singapore Civil Defence Force and the Singapore Police Force were immediately activated and the driver’s body was recovered at 4.30am.

PSA extends our heartfelt condolences to the deceased’s family and, together with his employer (PSA’s contractor), we will render support and assistance to them. There are no disruptions to port operations and investigations are ongoing.

We extend our sincere condolences to the driver’s loved ones.

MOM calls for thorough audit of workplace

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) revealed in a statement to MS News that the prime mover driver was a Malaysian worker.

During the incident, the prime mover swerved over the edge of a berth and decoupled from its trailer carrying two 20ft containers. The vehicle fell then fell into the sea.

MOM emphasised the need for a Workplace Traffic Management Plan for companies “whose key activities include extensive use of transport or goods vehicles”. Companies should communicate this plan to “all levels of staff, contractors, and vendors”.

They must also ensure that all workers follow workplace traffic safety rules, training programmes and safe work procedures.

The Manpower Ministry identified the occupier as PSA Corporation Limited and employer as Handling System Co. Pte Ltd.

At the time of writing, they have yet to find any serious Workplace Safety and Health lapses that would warrant a Stop Work Order. However, they’ve “instructed both occupiers to appoint a workplace safety and health auditor to conduct a thorough audit of the workplace.”

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Featured image adapted from Choo Yut Shing on Flickr, for illustration purposes only.

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