If someone told you 10 years ago that in 2019, it would be the norm for people to use their phone to book a ride from a total stranger, get into his/her personal car, and allow them to fetch you to your destination, you would probably think that it sounds like absolute nonsense.
However, that is exactly the situation these days.
Convenience and cheaper fares have shifted our preferences from hailing standard taxis to booking rides from total strangers through a phone application, despite our parents’ advice since young to never get into a car with a stranger. Sorry, Mum.
While the rides go smoothly for most people, some females have the poor luck of the draw.
Molested In Her Sleep
It all started when a young woman named “Woo Sihui” (on her Facebook profile) booked a RydePOOL from Bugis back to her home in the middle of the night around 3:20 a.m.
In case you didn’t know – RydePOOL is one of the available types of rides you can book on the carpooling app Ryde, where you can share the ride with other strangers for a cheaper price.
When the driver (named Kelvin) was about to arrive, he messaged Sihui on the app to request for her to sit in the co-driver seat in front, which usually meant that the back seats were occupied.
She complied when the driver arrived seven minutes later, and confirmed that the back seats were indeed occupied. Due to her exhaustion, she stated that she had dozed off moments after boarding the car.
She was awoken a couple of times through her ride – once by her co-riders to ask for loose change. She promptly returned to her sleep.
The second time, however, was not such a pleasant sensation to wake up to.
Sihui was awoken yet again, this time due to a “cold sensation” on the side of her right breast.
When she looked down, she saw the fingers of the driver’s hand on her skin. After Kelvin discovered that she was awake, he did not apologise, but merely stated in Mandarin “掉了” – which translates that something dropped; in this case it most likely would have referred to the strap of her blouse or bra.
However, she claimed that both the blouse of her romper and her new brand new bra (don’t know why must include “brand new”) was secure, and it was impossible that it would have dropped.
Being both disgusted and afraid, Sihui avoided eye contact till the end of the ride when she arrived at her house.
She then made a police report and wrote a post on Facebook summarising the incident in the hopes of spreading awareness and prevent the driver from molesting others.
Post Taken Down; Counter Police Report Made
However, the post was taken down instead by Facebook.
It appeared that someone had reported the post for violating the community guidelines on Facebook, and it succeeded.
Later in the day in the afternoon, while she was making a police report at the Ang Mo Kio HQ, it turns out that apparently, the driver himself was making a report against her as well.
While she did not know what the report was, she had assumed he was accusing her of defamation.
Angered and feeling ridiculed, Sihui was not about to give up. She then returned to her blog which she had apparently retired from for 3 years, and wrote a lengthy blog post describing the incident and then shared it on her Facebook as well.
Driver Took A Massive Detour
In her blog post, some information which was not in the original Facebook post also came to light.
As her boyfriend and her use an app known as Life360, it allowed her boyfriend to track her live location.
Apparently, the driver took a massive detour to Yishun to drop off her co-riders, before heading to her home in the Punggol area to drop her off.
For those unfamiliar with the map of Singapore, here’s a photo of the journey that displays the detour:
As you can see, the driver took a really long route, causing her ride to last almost an hour.
Then again, it could be that the driver was dropping off the other riders request or a certain jam in other areas.
To end off her blog post, Sihui wanted to remind ladies to stay vigilant and that her clothing does not determine her consent.
While she insists everything she had said was the absolute truth, the real truth behind Kelvin’s actions is only known by him himself. Maybe he really was being kind and helping her adjust her clothing.
However, it’s best for all drivers to keep their hands to themselves and for passengers (particularly females) to try to remain awake and vigilant.
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