SBS Transit bus captain lauded for stopping vehicle to put out car fire along Farrer Road

Bus captain Jiang Hong dashing to help the owner of the car put out the fire.
Bus captain Jiang Hong dashing to help the owner of the car put out the fire. PHOTO: STOMP

SINGAPORE - An SBS Transit bus captain has earned praise for what his company has labelled a "selfless act", after he was filmed stopping their vehicles to help put out a car fire.

Bus captain Jiang Hong, 39, who was operating bus service 153 along Farrer Road at around 5pm on Monday (June 6), had spotted dense smoke coming out from the bonnet of a stationary white car.

A contributor to citizen journalism website Stomp, who caught the incident on camera, said it was a small fire but the car was "burning a lot internally as if the oil was burning".

The video showed a uniformed man - later identified as Mr Jiang - running towards the car with a red fire extinguisher in hand.

"What a noble and kind-hearted act by our transport workers," the contributor said.

He joined the driver of the car in fighting the blaze. The driver, who is wearing a white shirt, was earlier thought to be ComfortDelGro taxi driver Ong Kong Poh, 48.

 

Mr Ong had stopped his taxi and and took out the fire extinguisher which he passed to the car driver who used it to put out the fire.

He was also on standby with big bottles of water, in case more assistance was needed, ComfortDelgro clarified on Thursday.

Responding to queries from The Straits Times, Ms Tammy Tan, ComfortDelGro's group corporate communications officer, said: "We are proud of our bus captain and cabby whose selfless act helped avert what could potentially have been a very serious incident indeed."

Public transport operator SBS Transit is a subsidiary of ComfortDelGro.

Ms Tan said the company found out that Mr Jiang had immediately stopped his double decker bus and sought his passengers' permission to suspend the bus journey so he could help put out the fire.

He then grabbed the extinguisher on board his bus and joined the burning car's driver. While both tried to douse the burning car in tandem, the fire was too strong and the driver exhausted his extinguisher.

Mr Jiang continued to fight the fire until the arrival of the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF), after which he returned to his bus and resumed service.

Although Mr Jiang told The Straits Times this was his first time experiencing such a scenario, he felt compelled to help as it was a "civic-minded thing" to do.

"I have undergone training as a bus captain on how to use the fire extinguisher, so I knew what to do. It was a pity that I could not put out the fire completely," he added.

An SCDF spokesman said it dispatched a fire engine, a red rhino and two fire bikes to respond to the fire, which involved the car's engine compartment.

The blaze was put out using a water jet.

No injuries were reported and the cause of the fire is under investigation.


Correction note: An earlier version of the story - based on information provided by ComfortDelGro - said that taxi driver Ong Kong Poh was fighting the car fire. This is not correct. ComfortDelGro has clarified that Mr Ong had passed the fire extinguisher in his taxi to the driver of the burning car.