Botanic Gardens tragedy: She pulled her friend to safety
Miss Tay talks about the tembusu incident; another tree falls in Jurong
She was at the Singapore Botanic Gardens for a picnic with two secondary school friends last Saturday afternoon, when she heard a rumbling noise from above.
Looking up, Miss Tay Pei Lei, 26, a civil servant, told The New Paper she was horrified to see a gigantic tree falling on them.
Instinctively, she got up, grabbed a friend who was still seated, dragged her a few steps and fell backwards before the 40m-tall tree crashed to the ground 5m away from them.
She said: "There were about 10 people around me and when the tree was falling, everyone was screaming and running away."
She added she was planning to seek compensation from the National Parks Board.
"The whole incident lasted less than 10 seconds and I am thankful that my friend and I are alive."
The tembusu tree, which is more than 270 years old, killed Ms Radhika Angara, 38, and injured her husband, Frenchman Jerome Rouch-Sirech, 39, and their two children, one-year-old twins.
Miss Tay, who dislocated her right shoulder while saving her friend, told TNP she was sitting some 5 to 10m away from Ms Radhika.
Miss Tay, who will be returning to work next week, said: "The next time I saw her again, she was already lying unconscious on the stretcher, her face bloody.
"One of her kids also had bruises on her face.
"I am deeply saddened by her passing, especially when her kids are still so young."
In a second such incident in two days, a 48-year-old Malaysian woman was taken to Ng Teng Fong Hospital yesterday after a tree fell in a carpark on Yuan Ching Road, in Jurong.
The victim was in the intensive care unit undergoing treatment and observation.