Firefighters rescue 2 people standing on ledge outside window after fire breaks out in Bukit Batok flat

Firefighters rescue 2 people standing on ledge outside window after fire breaks out in Bukit Batok flat

Bukit Batok Fire
Firefighters conducting an aerial rescue of two men found on a ledge outside the kitchen. They could not be pulled to safety inside the flat due to a "vast accumulation of items". (Photo: Facebook/SCDF)

SINGAPORE: Three people were rescued from a fire that broke out in a flat in Bukit Batok early on Friday (Nov 1), the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said. 

In a Facebook post, SCDF said that it responded to a residential unit fire on the 13th floor of Block 210A Bukit Batok Street 21 at 4.31am.

SCDF firefighters had to do a "forced entry" to gain access to the flat. 

A woman in her 60s was rescued from a toilet, while a man in his 60s and another man in his 30s were found standing on the ledge outside the kitchen window.

"A vast accumulation of items in the kitchen limited the working space for the firefighters," said SCDF. 

"This, coupled with the two men being highly exhausted, prevented the firefighters from pulling them safely into the unit."

A 60m ladder was then deployed to conduct an aerial rescue. 

Firefighters secured the two men with ropes from within the unit, before rescuers from SCDF's elite Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (DART) rappelled from the unit above and moved the two men into the ladder's rescue cage. 

The men were then lowered to the ground where they were attended to by paramedics.

Subsequently, the three people were brought to the Singapore General Hospital for burn injuries and smoke inhalation.

"FIRE WAS BIG AND FIERCE"

A witness, who declined to be named, told CNA that he heard screaming and shouting coming from the flat when the fire first broke out. 

Residents from the block, he said, were evacuated while the fire was being put out by the SCDF.

Bukit Batok Fire
Firefighters from the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) responding to a fire that broke out in a flat in Bukit Batok on Nov 1, 2019. (Photo: Facebook/SCDF)

"The fire was big and fierce," said the witness, adding that the area smelled very strongly of smoke.

According to the witness, the fire burned for nearly half an hour before it was extinguished between 5.30am and 5.40am. Residents were told to return to their homes at about 6.15am. 

The fire involved contents of the unit and is under investigation.

Source: CNA/ic(rw)

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