HDB block at Haig Road evacuated after fire breaks out, 3 taken to hospital

Police and SCDF officers arrived on the scene within five to ten minutes.
Police and SCDF officers arrived on the scene within five to ten minutes.PHOTO: WANG MIN

SINGAPORE - A small fire broke out at Haig Road on Saturday (July 29) evening, causing the evacuation of about 50 residents from a Housing Development Board block.

One woman was conveyed to Tan Tock Seng Hospital, while two children were taken to KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital, the the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said.  All three were conscious.

The fire started in the kitchen of an unit on the 11th-floor of the 13-storey Block 4.

SCDF said it extinguished the fire, which was confined to the kitchen. It was alerted to the incident at about 7.20pm. 

One fire engine, two red rhinos, two ambulances, and one supporting vehicle were dispatched to the location.

The police asked residents between the 8th and 13th floor to evacuate their flats at around 7.30pm.

Graphic designer Wang Min, who is one of the residents, said that she first heard sounds of shouting around 7pm, but exited her eighth-floor unit to see what happened only after she heard the fire engine siren.

She said that she saw black smoke billowing from some windows on the other side of the block, and that the police and SCDF arrived on the scene within five to ten minutes.

Ms Wang, 26, said the police shouted at everyone to evacuate the block, although some residents refused to get down.

At about 8pm she was allowed to go back up, although the police said at that time that residents living on 10th to the 12th floor still had to stay on the ground.

The Straits Times understands that by 9.40pm, all residents were allowed back to their homes.

Ms Wang told The Straits Times she felt safe now as the authorities seemed to have everything under control, but when she was evacuating, she "was quite shaken".

The cause of the fire is under investigation, SCDF said.