Woman arrested after climbing onto airport sculpture

A foreign woman was arrested by the police after she climbed over a railing at Changi Airport Terminal 1 onto netting below the Kinetic Rain Sculpture on Saturday morning.

A one-minute video and pictures of the incident were posted online on Sunday which showed the woman in a white dress perched precariously on the netting. At one point, she is seen grabbing wires of the sculpture.

Onlookers screamed as she attempted to balance on a wire supporting the net while moving towards the railing where police officers later pulled her to safety. She was on the net for a few minutes.

A Changi Airport Group (CAG) spokesman said the Kinetic Rain display was damaged, with some wires on the sculpture entangled.

"We have referred the matter to the police and our engineers are arranging for the sculpture to be repaired," she said.

A police spokesman said they received a call at 8.28am. Officers then arrested a woman in her 30s under the Mental Health Act. The Straits Times understands that she had appeared to be mentally unsound.

Investigations are ongoing, he said. The Act provides for the admission, detention, care and treatment of mentally disordered people in psychiatric institutions.

The police said she was not a Singapore citizen, but did not reveal her nationality.

The popular moving display began operating in July last year.

Created by German design firm Art+Com, it is made up of a pair of sculptures installed several metres apart. It consists of 1,216 metal pieces representing water droplets. Each droplet is attached by fine wires to individually controlled motors in the ceiling of the terminal's departure hall.

The droplets are programmed to transform into multiple shapes, including an aeroplane, a kite and a hot air balloon.

The intrusion is believed to be the first at Changi Airport, though there are reports of other incursions elsewhere.

In September, a man climbed into the Rain Oculus at Marina Bay Sands - a see-through bowl containing a fountain.

He sustained a head injury after climbing in, leaving blood stains in the bowl. Photos posted on citizen journalism website Stomp showed another man helping him out.

Both men disappeared before security arrived.

roysim@sph.com.sg


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