Boy aged 4 falls to death from Yishun flat in Singapore
Tragedy strikes the Singapore heartlands when a four-year-old boy was found dead in a pool of blood at the bottom of a flat in Yishun.
When Madam Lela V., a 58 year old housewife was making her way to the market yesterday, she spotted something out of the ordinary at the foot of Block 165, Yishun Ring Road.
As she walked closer, she discovered that it was the body of a four-year-old boy dressed in his pyjamas, lying motionless in a pool of his own blood.
According to a Straits Times news report, the police received a call for help at around 8.30am and when the paramedics arrived, they pronounced that the boy was dead at the scene.
30 year old housewife Rajakumari Gopalswamy was cleaning her flat when she heard a loud thud and someone screaming. She says, “I quickly went to take a look. There was a lot of blood. I feel very sad for the family.”
The family of the little boy had just moved into the ninth storey of that flat two weeks earlier and were still in the middle of unpacking as their home was still filled with cardboard boxes, and they had yet to install safety grilles on their windows.
It is believed that the young boy was usually taken care of by his grandmother during the day while both his parents were at work, but somehow he was left home alone this fateful morning.
Neighbours think that he might have woken up to an empty house and searched for his family – this was when the child fell to his death from the master bedroom window on the ninth floor.
We share our grief with the family over their loss.
Sadly, this is not the first case where a young child has fallen to his death from a flat in Singapore.
A six-year-old kindergarten student who was also left home alone for the first time, had climbed out of the kitchen window of his fifth-storey flat and although the window grilles were shut, they were unlocked.
His mother discovered his body at the foot of Block 446, Tampines Street 42, upon returning from running some errands.
The boy had suffered serious head and leg injuries and was pronounced dead 15 minutes later.
It’s unfortunate that such cases could have been prevented, and our hearts go out to the families of the victims, but what are the precautions all parents should make to avoid this from ever happening to them?
Here are three crucial key points to look out for:
It is important to install safety grilles on all windows and balconies, regardless of which floor you live on, and remember to keep it closed and locked at all times.
You should also remove furniture away from the windows or anything which your child can use to stand on to help him or her climb up onto the window ledge.
Experts warn against leaving your young child home alone even for a short period of time because as Dr Carol Balhetchet, Senior Director for youth services at the Singapore Children’s Society explains, “Within seconds, a three-year-old can do all sorts of things as they see the world with curiosity”.
If you need to run a few errands which won’t take you more than a few minutes, it’s wise to bring your child along with you, or ask a responsible adult such a neighbour, family member or friend to help keep an eye on your child for a while.
If your child is old enough to understand simple instructions, you should make it a firm rule that he’s not allowed to open the window, or climb up the window at all times.
Explain the dangers of what can happen if they do so and if it helps, find educational videos online to teach them about this as well.
Have you installed safety grilles on all your windows at home? What other precautions do you think parents should take to keep their little ones safe at home? Do share your suggestions in the comment section below.