The tendency to forget, is something human. Being absent minded is nothing unusual. We have often times read about surgeons leaving behind surgical equipments in their patients during operations.
A few years ago, all 4 potential candidates for the Bandar Klang state assembly seat were all rejected by the Returning Officer. They had all forgotten to fill in certain items in their nomination forms correctly. Even my friend, the then Incumbent Yang Berhormat of Bandar Klang, a Mr. Chua, messed up his forms.
The fact that the Road Transport Authorities or the Jabatan Pengangkutan Jalan (JPJ) decided to use a driver’s date of birth as the expiry date of one’s driving license validity, all goes on to denote that we as human beings have a tendency to forget easily.
But forgetting about something we have to do is excusable. It happens to most of us at some time or other. However, there are some things which, as drivers, we should not forget to do at all. Because in doing so, it could bring about dire consequences. It could even lead to someone dear to us dying.
A mother’s forgetfulness, absent mindedness or her inability to remember, call it what you may, recently caused her 5 year old son’s death. The driver in question, a school teacher in her 40’s had left her house at 7 a.m. one morning. She had wanted to send her son to the kindergarten nearby in Taman Perling, Johor Baru, before heading towards her school.
As luck would have it, the teacher concerned decided to rush to her school first to settle some matters related to her work.
As fate would have it, she was said to have lost track of her time. It usually happens, whether you believe it or not. The said mother, only remembered that she had left her sleeping son in the car, after 5 hours later. In panic, she rushed to her car at around 1.30 p.m. The teacher found her son lying unconscious.
The boy was immediately rushed to the Sultanah Aminah Hospital in Johor Baru. Unfortunately, the doctors there pronounced him dead. It was reported, groups of friends, colleagues and relatives, later visited the family in the afternoon.
The teacher’s son was scheduled to be cremated at the Kebun Teh Hindu Crematorium later in the evening. Police authorities reiterated that the case would be classified as sudden death. The police meanwhile said, the mother can be charged under Section 31 of the Child Act, for negligence.
Malaysia, as one knows, is an extremely hot and humid country. One should be fully aware that with temperatures escalating to as high as 38°C – 40°C these days, driving around in a non-conditioned vehicle, is next to impossible.
Can you imagine, what it would be like to be caged up in a car or vehicle, with its air-con off for a period of 5 to 6 hours? First of all, the temperatures inside the vehicle would have soared to unbearable proportions.
Secondly, the lack of oxygen in the vehicle could easily cause anyone to suffocate, least of all, a child. Thirdly, being left alone in a vehicle for a period of state of 5 to 6 hours, could easily lead a young child into a phobia. Fourthly, being only 5 years old, the young victim most probably had little or no knowledge of ever knowing how to open the car doors to let himself out. The odds, were all against the young boy.
The above is a very unfortunate incident. It should not have happened in the first place. But then, as we mentioned earlier, in the beginning of the article, human beings are liable to forget or be absent minded. The school teacher, who lost her son in the incident will long live to regret her actions. Which mother, in reality, does not love her child, we ask ourselves.
However, I hope that all drivers, especially parents, will see to it from henceforth, that no such unforeseen incidences happen again. Make sure, that you do not ever forget about your children who are in the car with you. Do not leave them behind in your vehicle alone. Because, your forgetfulness might very well cause them dire consequences or even deaths!
Before concluding this article on forgetfulness, allow me to relate to you a real life incident. On one of their visits to the cool famous hill resort of Genting Highlands, my niece, Su Yin and her hubby, Chan, brought her parents in-law along. They had planned to stay at the 6,666 room First World Hotel there.
While parking at the above hotel 20 – 30 storey car park, in their excitement, my niece and her family forgot to remember where they had parked their vehicles. On the day they had decided to depart from the resort, believe it or not, they could not locate where they parked their vehicles. It took hours, I tell you, for the family to get out of their predicament. And only, after security guards had gone round the entire storey of parking lots on their motorcycles, did they finally manage to locate their vehicles.
The above is a true incident. Motorists, who park at mega supermarkets, large complexes and hotels especially, are hereby advised to note down the parking lots where they have parked their vehicles. Do not allow what happened to my niece, Su Yin, ever befall you! It’s simple. Just take out your pocket diary. Write down the parking Lot number, the level (be it apple, orange or watermelon), you are in. Your actions will eventually save you a lot of time and panic.
Take my advice. You’ll not regret it!