May 30, 2024


Savvy business masters

Fish farm owner fined for steering boat while drunk, crashing into Police Coast Guard craft

SINGAPORE: The owner of a fish farm was fined S$3,000 on Thursday (Mar 19) for navigating a boat while drunk.

Tan Choon Teck, 56, owns a fish farm north of Pulau Ubin as well as a Singapore-registered boat, the court heard.

He used the boat to travel between Singapore’s mainland and his fish farm, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Edwin Soh.

At about 5pm on Sep 23 last year, Tan had a drinking session with two friends at Pulau Ubin, ordering a bottle of Martell VSOP, and became intoxicated.

An hour later, he took the bottle back to his boat and steered it back to his fish farm.

He left the farm once more at around 10pm, while still drunk, and steered the boat towards Punggol Marina Country Club.

While on his way there, he lost control of his boat at the sea off Pulau Ubin and collided into a stationary Police Coast Guard (PCG) patrol craft.

Several crew members were on board the PCG craft but were not injured. The craft sustained some damage including graze marks.

A police officer attached to PCG checked on Tan and found that he reeked of alcohol and had bloodshot eyes. He sustained some scratches and bruises on both knees.

The half-filled bottle of liquor was found on Tan’s boat, and he failed a breathalyser test.

The officer reported the collision to PCG Operations and investigations commenced.

Tan had steered his boat while drunk, knowing that he ran the risk of losing control of the vessel and resulting in a collision.

Tan pleaded guilty to one charge of navigating his boat in a rash manner endangering human life.

He has made full restitution for the repair costs of S$8,952.70 for the PCG craft.

For navigating a vessel in a rash manner endangering human life, he could have been jailed for up to a year, fined S$5,000, or both.

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