At least two women were rushed to the hospital and more than 65 residents were evacuated after a Housing and Development Board (HDB) flat in Serangoon North Ave 1 caught fire on Thursday evening.
The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said that they were informed about the fire at Block 147, Serangoon North Avenue 1 at 7.15 pm. The SCDF said that a total of 16 residents who were "in close proximity and directly above" the affected unit were evacuated. In addition to this, another 50 residents were also evacuated from the block.
"The fire was extinguished by the SCDF using compressed air foam and one water jet. No forcible entry was conducted," the SCDF told TODAY. At least two fire engines, two police cars and one ambulance were spotted at the scene.
According to SCDF, a woman in her 80s and another woman in her 30s were taken to Tan Tock Seng Hospital after experiencing breathing difficulties. However, reports said both of them are in stable condition now.
An eyewitness said that the fire occurred around 7 pm. Ken Chan, who lives at an opposite block, told the news website that he first noticed white smoke emitting from a HDB unit on the second floor. He decided to alert the authorities as the smoke became thicker at about 7.15 pm.
The fire has disrupted power in the whole block and a coffee shop, located in the same block, was also hit by it. No one was at home when the fire broke out. SCDF said that the cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Singapore design guidelines stipulate the use of smoke detectors and sprinklers in every building and upon activation, the system should reach a full design-driven solution in less than 60 seconds, as required in Clause 7.6.26 of the Fire Code.