Lift severs Singaporean woman's hand - tips to keep your child safe during lift travel

Lift severs Singaporean woman's hand - tips to keep your child safe during lift travel

Read about a horrific incident that happened to an 85-year-old woman. The tragedy is yet another incident that reminds us, as parents, to watch out for hidden dangers that lurk in everyday equipment such as lifts and escalators, when out and about with our kids.

lift severs singaporean woman's hand

Lift severs a Singaporean woman’s hand in a freak accident: the lift has been suspended from use while investigations continue.
Image credit: The Straits Times

On 9 October, 85-year-old Khoo Bee Hua set out for her normal morning walk with her dog. Little did she know that her morning was about to end in an absolute nightmare.

According to The Straits Times, Mdm Khoo’s walk ended tragically with her hand being severed in the lift on her way home. The horrific incident took place at block 322 Tah Ching Road in Taman Jurong.

Reports say that when The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) arrived at the scene, they found Mdm Khoo “stuck in the lift on the ground floor with her left hand trapped in between the lift doors.” Rescue tools were used to free the woman, by prying open the lift doors.

She was immediately taken to National University Hospital (NUH) along with her severed left hand which was reportedly retrieved by paramedics and packed in ice.

However, it latest reports say her hand cannot be reattached.

A freak accident

TODAY reports that members of the public had rushed to the lift lobby when they heard shrieks. They then saw Mdm Khoo’s small white dog hanging from the top of the lift doors by its leash.  They cut the leash immediately and alerted emergency and rescue teams.

It’s likely that Mdm Khoo had unsuccessfully attempted to pull her dog into the lift after realising that its leash had got trapped, following which the lift doors shut on her hand, severing it. But there is still no official word on how the accident actually happened.

According to reports, Mr Ho Thian Poh, general manager of Jurong Town Council, said the lift had been serviced just a week prior to the incident and “was certified to be in good working condition.”

The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) meanwhile has suspended use of the lift until investigations are complete.

lift severs singaporean woman's hand1

When taking a lift with children, be extra vigilant about their safety.

Take-home message for parents

Mums and dads, accidents like this could very well happen to a child if we, as parents, are not vigilant about our kids’ safety while out and about.

We know that accidents involving lifts and escalators are all too common — just recently a four-year-old in China died when he was pinned between the moving handrails of an escalator and the floor. And this is just one of the many escalator/lift tragedies that take place around the world, involving kids.

In order to prevent incidents of this nature happening to little ones, here are some safety tips to keep in mind:

  • Always make sure your child’s shoelaces are tied and that he doesn’t have any hanging/dragging straps (for example, from a bag/ backpack), before stepping into a lift or getting on an escalator.
  • Hold your child’s hand firmly while getting in to and out a lift or on and off an escalator.
  • Advice your child to always stand away from the edge of the escalator.
  • Pay attention to the signs around lifts and escalators as they indicate emergency procedures.
  • Never let your child play near or around lifts and/or escalators.
  • Keep your child away from the doors of the lift once inside.

For tips on escalator safety with kids, please read this theAsianparent article.

Watch the video below for lift safety tips:

We at theAsianparent send our sincere wishes to Mdm Khoo and hope she recovers fast. Parents, please share your own lift safety tips in relation to children by posting a comment below. 


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