Maid who fell to death while trying to climb back into flat: Coroner rules misadventure

Maid who fell to death while trying to climb back into flat: Coroner rules misadventure
Mr Choo Y.K. (inset), son of the Ms Mila's employers, said that his parents were not at home when the incident happened.

On Friday, a coroner's inquiry called the incident at the Stadia condominium at Yio Chu Kang Road a "tragic accidental misadventure" that showed the dangers of acting impulsively.


Get the full story from The Straits Times.

Here is an earlier story on Ms Mila's death:

Maid falls to death trying to climb back into apartment

Maureen Koh | The New Paper | Saturday, Apr 19, 2014

She had locked herself out of her employer's apartment when she took out the garbage.

Panicking because she was mid-way through preparing dinner, she went to a neighbour's unit and asked to be let in.

She then tried climbing back into her employer's apartment from there. The flats are on the fifth storey.

Ms Mila, 29, did not make it. The domestic helper fell to her death at about 5.40pm yesterday at the Stadia condominium at Yio Chu Kang Road in Serangoon.

Mr Choo Y. K., 47, who works in sales, told The New Paper that the Filipino helper had worked for his parents for three years.

The elderly couple were not at home when it happened because they were out with Mr Choo's brother.

He said: "We didn't know what happened until I reached at around 6pm. I saw the police tents and later heard someone mention my parents' unit number and I realised that it was our maid."

He suspects she may have been worried because the frying pan had been left unattended.

Mr Choo shook his head and said: "She was so silly. She should have called one of us instead. It is such a pity."

The last they heard from the helper was in the afternoon, when she called Mr Choo's mother about preparing dinner.

"My mother told her not to cook too much because they had a heavy lunch," he said.

His parents were at his brother's apartment when The New Paper visited the scene.

He said: "They are very shocked. Something like this shouldn't have happened."

Mr Choo said he hopes the tragedy can serve to caution other helpers not to attempt such a risky move.

Referring to the unattended frying pan, he said: "Even if a fire had broken out, we could have just called for the fire engine."

A police spokesman said they received a call at 5.41pm yesterday. When they got there, they found the motionless body of a 29-year-old woman.

He said: "She was pronounced dead by paramedics at the scene. Police are investigating the unnatural death."

FRIGHTENED

Most of the residents approached said they found out about the death only after they returned home.

A mainland Chinese student, who is in her early 20s, said: "I was so scared when I saw the blood.

"I don't dare to stay at home alone and I have just called my friend over to keep me company."

But Ms Imee, 37, a Filipino domestic helper, was in tears as she told The New Paper that she had lost her friend.

She recalled: "I heard a loud bang and someone screamed 'Ah!'"

Ms Imee said she did not pay much attention because she thought it was neighbours shouting or talking loudly.

When her employer returned home at around 7pm, she was told that someone had died.

Said Ms Imee: "My employer was quite freaked out, so she told me to close all the windows and draw the curtains.

"I didn't know that it was my friend until I went down to walk the dog at almost 9pm."

Ms Imee met Mr Choo, who told her that it was Ms Mila.

She cried and said: "Mila was so pretty and cheerful. She'd always have a smile and we'd joke when she took the elderly uncle in his wheelchair for walks.

"Now I am so worried about her family members back in the Philippines. Oh dear, what is going to happen to them?"

maureenk@sph.com.sg

This article was published on April 17 in The New Paper.

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