e-scooter
representational picture Pixabay

An electric scooter caused a fire accident in a Hougang flat on Friday evening, March 29 and four residents of the unit had to leave the apartment to save their lives.

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said that at around 7 pm on Friday they were alerted to the fire incident which took place at Block 313 Hougang Avenue 5.

As per SCDF the personal mobility device (PMD), which was left charging in the living room of the flat burst into flames and caused the fire at the seventh-floor unit. The SCDF officials used a water jet to put out the fire.

The Chinese-language newspaper Shin Min Daily News reported that a 27-year-old male resident of the flat said he was resting in the living room when he saw the sparks from the e-scooter. The unnamed man, who has a spinal problem and has to rely on a wheelchair or a cane said that the incident occurred so suddenly that he had to leave everything inside the flat and "crawled out of the gate to save my life."

When his neighbours saw him, they came to help the man. His mother, step-father and uncle were inside the flat at that time but all of them successfully escaped from the apartment.

The step-father, who is a 48-year-old pest control worker, suffered from minor burn injuries on his leg and another male member of the family, the uncle of the 27-year-old man, was taken to hospital as he got hurt while trying to put out the fire by collecting water from the toilet. However, SCDF took the step-father and the uncle to Singapore General Hospital for further treatments.

Inside the flat, where the accident happened, there were three pigeons, who were inside the cage and unfortunately all of them died.

The officials evacuated almost 15 people, who are the residents of the same block, where the fire accident took place.

Earlier, SCDF shared some safety tips for users of PMDs. These are:

  • Avoid overcharging the battery, especially leaving it to charge overnight.
  • While charging such batteries place them on a hard flat surface to allow optimal dissipation of heat.
  • Do not place the charging battery near combustible materials.