SCDF responds to air pack query after video of man jumping from HDB flat circulates

Screengrabs from a video showing a man falling to his death from a HDB flat.
Screengrabs from a video showing a man falling to his death from a HDB flat.PHOTO: INTERNET

SINGAPORE - The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) has explained on its Facebook page why a safety life air pack was not deployed in time to save a man who was caught on video falling to his death from a HDB flat.

The video lasting almost three minutes has been circulating on WhatsApp and on the Internet. The incident happened on Jan 14 at Dover Crescent, SCDF said.

SCDF officers were seen setting up an inflatable safety life air pack to cushion the man's fall, but it was not placed where the victim would have fallen. A woman could be overheard questioning why the air pack was not inflated nearer to the area where the victim would fall.

In response to a query on its Facebook page, SCDF said that there were difficulties setting up the "life pack", mainly due to obstruction from trees and shrubs.

SCDF wrote: "Unfortunately in this incident, the crew encountered difficulty in deploying the life pack due to ground constraints, primarily arising from the obstruction by trees and shrubs, and the man jumped before the rappelling lines and safety net could be set up."

This is SCDF's full response:

"The unfortunate incident happened on 14 January at about 11 am at Dover Crescent. SCDF first responding crew spotted a man standing on a ledge outside a 12th storey unit.

"At the onset of such an incident, SCDF would typically set up a life-pack at the most suitable location to cushion the impact of a fall and subsequently, DART rescuers would rappel to bring the person to safety.

"Unfortunately in this incident, the crew encountered difficulty in deploying the life pack due to ground constraints, primarily arising from the obstruction by trees and shrubs, and the man jumped before the rappelling lines and safety net could be set up.

"In rescue operations such as this, we are constantly faced with numerous challenges, including the daunting task of attempting to save someone who may not be inclined to be rescued. Notwithstanding this, SCDF has and will continue to do our utmost to save anyone in distress. We extend our condolences to the family of the deceased."

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