Man climbs onto ledge to flee fire

Man climbs onto ledge to flee fire
PHOTO: SCDF/Facebook

He was resting in his bedroom yesterday when his mother ran in after hearing an explosion.

Mr Deric Tan, 27, told her to go downstairs with his elderly aunt, nephew and their maid, while he rushed over to alert his neighbour.

The sales coordinator told The New Paper: "I saw a thick cloud of black smoke coming from my neighbour's flat and was concerned for his safety."

Mr Tan said that when he got no response after shouting into the unit, he ran down the stairs to help evacuate more neighbours in the next three storeys.

By the time he reached the ground floor of Block 138, Bedok Reservoir Road, he found other residents shouting out instructions to his neighbour, who had climbed out onto the ledge outside the bedroom window on the fourth storey.

Ms Sutini Samat, 29, who lives on the third storey, was one of them. The senior sales associate said: "He was panicking and shouting for help, so I told him to duck to avoid inhaling the smoke."

In their Facebook post, the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said they were alerted to the fire at about 5pm.

"When SCDF firefighters arrived, they saw a man standing on the ledge outside a bedroom on the fourth storey as black smoke billowed out from the window. Firefighters quickly pitched a ladder and rescued him from the ledge," said the SCDF.

The man was taken to Changi General Hospital with burns.

SCDF added: "Firefighters had to force their way into the locked unit and extinguish the blaze with two water jets. The cause of the fire which gutted the entire unit is currently under investigation."

Mr Tan's mother, Madam Agnes Teo, 68, who has been living there for 27 years, said in Mandarin: "I have never seen anything like this. I hope he will be all right."

Aljunied GRC MP Pritam Singh said in a Facebook post that he had received notice of the fire and rushed to the site.

He added that he "was relieved to know that the man on the ledge was rescued by the Singapore Civil Defence Force. He is out of danger and has been sent to hospital".

chualel@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on FEB 21, 2017.
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