10 Oct 2014

Airline pilot banned from driving

3:26 pm on 10 October 2014

A judge says a Singapore Airlines employee is lucky to be alive after his colleague missed a stop sign south of Christchurch last week.

Benjamin Yonghao Wu was on a two-day layover on 1 October when he crashed his rental car into a four-wheel-drive carrying a horse float just south of Christchurch, after failing to see the stop sign.

Two of Wu's colleagues suffered serious injuries and he earlier pleaded guilty to two charges of reckless driving.

In the Christchurch District Court today, Judge Stephen O'Driscoll disqualified Wu from driving for 18 months and ordered him to pay $10,000 in compensation to each passenger hurt.

The judge said that, initially, there were serious concerns for the life of one passenger, and he faces a long recovery.

Judge O'Driscoll said he could not see how Wu did not see the sign, but it was lucky that no one was killed and no one else injured.