A father and mother lost their son. Siblings lost their brother. Someone lost a fiance.
My condolence goes out to the family.
When I first heard the accident, I thought it happened on a field howitzer FH2000. Later on, I realize how poor my memory have gotten.
There are a lot of moving parts to the FH2000 and I would have thought it is more prone to mishaps.
What CFC(NS) Aloysius Pang suffered from was rather horrendous as more and more news starts dripping out to the media. First based on a few reliable accounts, they say he was seriously injured. Then we know that he was injured in the torso and require multiple surgery.
That was when I got sick in the stomach, because there is not a lot of ways in my opinion you could get injured in the torso in the Singapore Self Propelled Howitzer (SSPH).
From Channel News Asia’s report of his passing, we got to know roughly what happened:
He had been carrying out repair work inside a Singapore Self-Propelled Howitzer – an artillery gun mounted on an armoured chassis – with two other SAF personnel when the accident happened at the Waiouru Training Area on Jan 19.
“Unfortunately, CFC (NS) Pang sustained injuries when the gun barrel was lowered,” said MINDEF.
My brain cannot resolve how could he work inside the SSPH and sustained the injury when the gun barrel is lowered. I guess it might be a figured of speech but from what I understand of the SSPH, likely he was outside.
This one hits close to home due to the amount of times I used to climb in and out of SSPH.
I could not sleep for 1 hour, thinking through what risk event we did not account for that could have prevented this from happening.
System and software safety is a horrendously dry subject, and in some of our courses, the trainer cites various past examples how things could go wrong. They were some of the highlights of those dry course because it reminds us of some crazy permutations things could happen.
System safety is a never ending endeavor. So is workplace safety.
Sometimes I get a little tired of hearing the witch hunt of trying to make someone accountable or the rhetoric of the significance of NS. I have my own philosophy on that, but I will keep it to myself for now.
I suspect… we should spare a thought for someone else who might struggle to come to terms with what his actions eventually did.
It is a huge coincidence CFC (NS) Pang is also someone so connected to those of us who watched him on TV.
May he rest in peace.
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cheong wee Tan
Thursday 24th of January 2019
We are born to dies. Full stop.