KUANTAN: A former bauxite-transport lorry driver allegedly involved in an accident that killed a teacher last year was charged in the traffic court here on Friday.
Fairuz Azman Azmi, 36, was accused of driving recklessly and endangering the public, and in doing so, caused the death of school teacher Norhaili Ahmad Zabidi.
The incident occurred in front of Ibam Mining, along the Kuantan Bypass, here at 3pm on Dec 21 last year.
Under Section 41(1) of the Road Transport Act, the driver could be jailed for up to 10 years or fined a maximum of RM20,000.
Fairuz Azman was seen pacing outside the courtroom as early as 9am, before being called in to face his charges at 11.30am.
He claimed trial.
His lawyer Mohd Saifuldin Ab Rahman pleaded for low bail, saying his client had been fired after the incident went viral on social media and had been unemployed since.
"His wife works as a clerk in a factory, earning less than RM1,000. Having to take care of their two children, she cannot afford a high bail for her husband," said Mohd Saifuldin.
Magistrate Nurul Naim Abdullah allowed bail at RM5,000, with two local sureties.
She fixed Sept 26 for next mention.
The prosecution was led by Inspector Nik Azwan Sidi Ahmad.
The owner of a bauxite lorry Teh Ling Hock had on Thursday been fined RM28,000 by the Sessions Court over the same accident.
Sessions Court judge Unaizah Mohd meted out the fine after Teh, 46, plead guilty to all three charges.
He was charged with failing to ensure the safety of other road users by not maintaining the lorry adequately and modifying the vehicle by raising the side panel without approval.
The third charge was for overloading the lorry by carrying 30,090kg bauxite, which exceeded the permissible weight of 21,000kg by 43.3%.
Teh paid the fine.
It was reported that the overloading of the lorry caused the back left tyre to come off and hit the roof of an oncoming MyVi car in the opposite lane, killing Norhaili, then 40, a teacher at Sekolah Kebangsaan Balok here.
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