61-year-old man arrested for fire at Toa Payoh block
A 61-year-old man has been arrested for mischief by fire, after a pre-dawn blaze broke out at the void deck of a block in Toa Payoh.
A police spokesman told The New Paper on Wednesday they were alerted to the fire at Block 14A Lorong 7 Toa Payoh at about 4.50am yesterday, and investigations were ongoing.
Residents told TNP on Wednesday the flames had engulfed discarded items at the void deck, filling the air in the area with thick black smoke.
A resident on the highest floor of the 25-storey block, who wanted to only be known as Mr David, 65, said residents from the 9th storey up had to evacuate through a single staircase which was filled with smoke.
"Many old people suffered," he said.
"The elderly had so many problems evacuating, and some had to be carried down more than 20 storeys."
He added none of the emergency exit lights worked, and residents panicked as they were funnelled into the single stairwell guided only by the light of their smartphones.
The incident left households in the block without electricity for more than 24 hours, with it only being restored at about 9.30am today.
Water and gas supplies were also disrupted, but were subsequently restored.
Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC MP Saktiandi Supaat said on Facebook, today: "The fire has indeed disrupted the normal routine of around 117 households in the 25-storey block.
"We will continue to monitor the supply of essential services at the block and ensure there are no more disruptions to residents."