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35 evacuated after fire breaks out in Jalan Bukit Merah flat

35 evacuated after fire breaks out in Jalan Bukit Merah flat

The fire at Block 117, Jalan Bukit Merah on May 17, 2022, involved the contents of a bedroom. (Photos: Facebook/Singapore Civil Defence Force)

SINGAPORE: Thirty-five people were evacuated following a fire at a Housing Board (HDB) flat in Jalan Bukit Merah on Tuesday (May 17).

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said they were alerted to the incident at Block 117 Jalan Bukit Merah at about 11.35am.

Thick black smoke could be seen coming from a unit on the ninth floor.

SCDF said firefighters wearing breathing apparatus sets had to "conduct forcible entry to gain access into the unit". No one was in the flat at the time.

The blaze, which involved the contents of a bedroom, was extinguished with one water jet.

"About 35 persons were evacuated from neighbouring units as a precautionary measure. There were no reported injuries,” said SCDF in a Facebook post.

Preliminary investigation into the cause of the fire indicates that it was of electrical origin.

A photo of the affected unit showed a charred bed frame as well as burnt walls. The exterior of the block was also blackened with soot.

In a Facebook post on Tuesday night, MP Indranee Rajah (PAP-Tanjong Pagar) said no one was injured in the fire and that the flat's occupants were safe as they were out at the time.

She visited the affected family on Tuesday evening and they were "bearing up well", she added.

The HDB branch office has made a rental flat in the next block available, while Resident Committee (RC) members helped out with a new mattress and bedding.

The RC members also provided food and various items, said Ms Indranee, who is also Minister in the Prime Minister's Office.

"A kind donor provided NTUC vouchers so that the family can buy food and other necessaries lost in the fire," she added.

"We are currently working with relevant agencies for financial and other assistance for the family."

The town council has cleaned up the common area and checked all the electrical fittings of the relevant units, and the external facade will be repainted and washed on Wednesday, she said in the post. 

"So glad that my residents are okay and very grateful to everyone who has pitched in to help. Strong caring communities make all the difference in times like these," Ms Indranee added.

The incident is the latest in a string of fires in recent weeks.  

One person was taken to hospital after a coffee shop blaze at Serangoon Central Drive on May 14. The fire involved the kitchen exhaust ducting of the eatery, with flames rising several storeys up the side of the building.

On May 13, a fire at a fourth-floor Housing Board flat in Bedok claimed the lives of three people, including a three-year-old. Sixty people were evacuated as a precautionary measure and the cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Source: CNA/zl(gr)

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