PAPER money, houses and cars are burnt as offerings for the dead here, but a real car was scorched at the IMM Building carpark on Wednesday after it was parked beside a large container used for burning incense paper.
One corner of the white Toyota was charred and part of the plastic bumper had melted away, revealing the engine.
Ms Lim, a businesswoman in her 50s, was furious when she realised what had happened to her car.
Her son parked the car at IMM on Wednesday at about 1pm, she told Shin Min Daily News. It was raining when he parked the car at the open-air carpark of the building.
"He found the car was burnt when he came down an hour later, and informed me immediately," she told the paper.
She believes that wind had blown burning incense paper from a wiremesh container beside the car towards the vehicle.
"The nose of the car and the engine were damaged, and the car was covered in incense paper, like a hearse. So unlucky!" she fumed.
The workers burning the incense paper should have done it farther away from her car or broadcast a message asking patrons to move their cars, she added.
The area that the Toyota was parked in had been reserved for IMM tenants to burn offerings during the Hungry Ghosts Festival and cars are not supposed to park there for the time being, a spokesman for IMM told Shin Min.
There is so much paper money being burnt every year that the tenants bring it down in trolleys, an IMM employee told Lianhe Wanbao. For unknown reasons, the barricades demarcating the area had been moved.
The fire was extinguished before firefighters from the Singapore Civil Defence Force arrived.
IMM apologised for the incident.
This article by The Straits Times was published in MyPaper, a free, bilingual newspaper published by Singapore Press Holdings.