A Bali ambulance driver has been arrested and charged with violating traffic laws and causing a fatal accident after running a red light. On Wednesday 11th May at 2.55 pm ambulance driver Wiwin Samsul Anwar drove through a red light on Jalan Sunset in Kuta. He plowed into a motorbike rider named Pandu Wahya Prayogi who died on impact.
Anwar is being criminally charged with breaking the traffic code and for killing Prayogi because despite driving an ambulance he was not attending an emergency. There was no reason for him to jump the red light, he did not have his lights and sirens flashing and he did not have a patient in need of treatment in the ambulance. Anwar was transporting a corpse to the hospital.
His negligence caused him to drive straight into Prayogi’s Honda Vario. Prayogi was was driving within the rules of the road across the junction. Pandu Wahya Prayogi was 28-years-old and from Bali, police have reported that he received a fatal head injury upon impact.
Jalan Sunset is one of the busiest and most dangerous roads in Bali. The intersection is managed by traffic lights and there are lanes for each direction of traffic though this does little to prevent drivers from driving in a way that suits them.
Often scooter drivers take their chances and nip across the intersection as the lights are changing. Since Jalan Sunset is long and there are few places to turn around or go back on yourself if you have missed an exit, drivers tend to do U-turns at the intersection which is also illegal and has caused many accidents in the past.
In Bali, just as in other parts of the world, drivers are expected to slow down and pull to the side of the road if possible when they hear an emergency services vehicle coming through. Ambulances are permitted to run red lights but the driver must only do this if lives are at stake and it is safe and clear to do so.
As travelers return to Bali they are reminded that road safety should be their top priority, as a driver, a passenger, and a pedestrian. Always wear a helmet and keep all your attention on the road. Sadly, many accidents in Bali are caused by negligent driving, and many are caused by people not knowing the rules of the road, both written and unwritten.
Scooter accidents happen nearly every day in Bali though not all are fatal, and may result in life-changing injuries. Australian nurse and mum of two Peta Richards suffered life-changing head injuries following a hit and run scooter crash in Bali on 1st April 2022. After spending 10-days in hospital in an induced coma she was flown on a medical evacuation flight back to Melbourne for more intensive treatment.
Her family has said it was a case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. They warned of how this incident happened to Richards despite her doing ‘everything right, she wore her helmet, had her international motorbike driving license, and comprehensive driver and medical insurance.
In January 2021 an ambulance carrying three Covid-19 patients in Bali crashed on its way to a quarantine center. On this occasion, the ambulance also ran a red light, but the driver was flashing the lights and the sirens. The liability for the crash landed with the driver of a white X-Over.
In many cases the police allow drivers to resolve minor collisions themselves, in the case of accidents that result in major injury, damage to property, or foreigners the police will intervene.
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