NEA to take action against nasi padang stall over death of 4-year-old boy

SINGAPORE - The National Environment Agency (NEA) will take legal action against a nasi padang stall at Northpoint Shopping Centre, after a four-year-old boy died of food poisoning four days after eating food from the stall.

It was previously reported that State Coroner Marvin Bay had found that the boy, Shayne Sujith Balasubraamaniam, had died due to misadventure.

He said in his findings yesterday that the boy's death underscores that careless food handling and inattention to proper hygiene practices can result in catastrophic consequences for young and vulnerable people.

In a statement on Friday, the NEA said it was notified of the episode on Jan 24, and conducted a joint inspection with the Health Ministry on the same day.

The Straits Times reports that the NEA had detected two hygiene lapses - failure to register a food handler and failure to protect food with a covered receptacle.

The stall's license was suspended for three weeks while investigations were ongoing, and its operator was directed to conduct a thorough cleaning and send all its food handlers for a Basic Food Hygiene Course.

The NEA said that with the completion of the Coroner's Inquiry, it will proceed to prosecute the licensee in court.

According to The Straits Times, failure to comply with the rules can lead to a fine of up to $2,000 and a further fine of up to $100 for each day the offence continues.

The NEA said that it "will continue to inspect all food retail outlets regularly, and take strict enforcement action against any errant food retail outlets".

It also urged the public to call 1800-2255638 or contact it via the MyENV app if they notice potential hygiene lapses that merit investigation.