First, there was a loud explosion. Then, the boat erupted into flames in front of senior marina assistant Muhamad Sunasri Samat's eyes.
But instead of fleeing together with the boat's occupants, Mr Sunasri, 38, grabbed a fire extinguisher to put out the blaze.
Within minutes, four of his colleagues from One Degree 15 Marina Sentosa Cove had joined him. They cordoned off the area and fought the fire, continuing to do so even after professional firefighters arrived on the scene a while later.
For their efforts, the five men each received a Special Mention award at the annual Hotel Security Awards ceremony yesterday.
Recalling the incident in March, Mr Azhar Hamid, 52, said the situation was dangerous as the boat was in the fuel dock.
"After this episode, we did think, what if the petrol nearby had exploded, all of us are married with children," said the assistant security manager. "We reacted instinctively; when something that dangerous happened, we just wanted to help."
In the ceremony at the Furama RiverFront hotel, 14 other hotel employees were recognised by the Singapore Hotel Association for their bravery, vigilance, or honesty.
Another award winner, Mr Suresh Kumar Govindaraju, a security supervisor at Amara Sanctuary Resort Sentosa, was called to a hotel guest's room last December, after the guest requested help with his son, who had a high fever and was having seizures.
Mr Suresh, 51, a former firefighter with two sons aged 15 and 20, noticed that the baby had stopped breathing. He immediately performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the baby regained consciousness soon after. "I was trained to save lives and property. It's just a part and parcel of life in the security line," he said.