Man Who Died in Forklift Accident Had Bought an HDB Flat & Wanted to Marry Next September

Anything can happen at any time and anywhere. While there are precautions we can take, sometimes fate slips through the cracks of our fingers.

Everyday incidents remind us of the brevity of life, and such was the case of Mr Ely Chow. 

Man Who Died in Forklift Accident Had Bought an HDB Flat & Wanted to Marry Next September

He was planning to propose. He was planning to move in with the love of his life. He was planning for a bright future. 

But it was all robbed from him when a machine toppled and pinned him down. Eventually, he died from injuries in the hospital. 

At 7:53 am on Tuesday (27 December) at 601 Rifle Range Road, a machine toppled over while being carried by a forklift. Unfortunately, it landed on the 31-year-old man. 

A call was made to the SCDF at 8:05 am, and they rushed down immediately. The man was then taken to Ng Teng Fong General Hospital and later pronounced dead. 

This marks the 45th case of workplace fatality in Singapore this year.
Speaking to Lianhe Zaobao, Ely’s 28-year-old younger brother, Ethan, said he and his wife were having breakfast in Genting when they received a call from his mother reporting the incident. 

They immediately arranged to take the next flight back but received the news of his death before they boarded the plane.

According to his 33-year-old sister, Ruth, the victim lived with their parents and had plans to move out after securing a BTO flat in Ghim Moh, where the rest of their family stayed. 

Also, he planned to propose to his girlfriend on 2 January next year, and they were going to get married next September.

Family Doesn’t Know the Details

Currently, their household doesn’t know the exact details of the incident. At Ely’s wake, the forklift operator who caused the incident didn’t turn up, and they weren’t able to confront him. 

“We just want to know what happened at that time,” Ruth said. 

She shared that she’d frequently see stories like this on the news but didn’t think it’d happen to a loved one. 

Following up, the family wants to shed more light on this issue, so such incidents don’t happen again. 

“We want to try to make everyone more aware of the seriousness of workplace safety,” Ruth said to The Straits Times.

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Addressing Workplace Incidents in Singapore

On 1 September, MOM introduced the six-month heightened safety period. If found to have unsafe work conditions or poor risk controls, companies can be barred from hiring foreign workers.

MOM also announced in September that fatal vehicular incidents have increased over the last 1.5 years.

In September, companies in the construction, manufacturing, marine, process and transport and storage industries, along with industries that use heavy or industrial vehicles such as lorries and forklifts, were required to review their safety procedures. It was also the first time that it was compulsory to do so. 

Simply put, the government is placing more pressure on these companies to keep the workers safe. 


There has been a surge in work-related deaths in 2022.

This year saw 45 fatalities. Comparatively, 2021 had only 37. 

Hopefully, the number is way lower next year.

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Featured Image: Lianhe Zaobao + Foursquare