Being a taxi driver has never been easy. Long working hours, demanding (at times unreasonable) customers, putting your life at risk on the roads- one could not possibly sum it all up.
However, the one of the worst days on the job has to be when you are physically assaulted.
On Aug 19 last year, taxi driver Mr Ng Kian Leong picked up Mr Gareth John, who threw up in his taxi after a night of drinking. (One of the challenges of the job too)
John apologised to Ng for vomiting and promised that he would pay for the $30 cleaning bill.
However, when Ng stopped at a petrol kiosk to clean up the mess, John alighted and walked away from the taxi without paying. The 49-year-old chased after John, questioning his actions, but he kept walking on.
While contacting the police, John attempted to flag another taxi but when Ng informed the taxi driver about the situation, and the latter drove off. John then punched Ng in the chest and threatened to kill him if he tried to stop him again.
John then offered Ng $100 to settle the matter, but Ng declined it and only accepted John’s payment for the taxi fare when the police arrived. John also paid the petrol kiosk the cleaning fee.
The Briton, an IT manager and a permanent resident who has worked in Singapore for 18 years – was fined $4,000 on Monday (April 16) after pleading guilty in court to voluntarily causing hurt to Ng. He showed extreme remorse and also compensated Mr Ng $316 for his medical expenses and a loss of income.
For voluntarily causing hurt to Ng, John could have been jailed for two years and fined $5,000.