Toddler in yacht fire has undergone three surgeries so far, will have to undergo skin grafting
He had planned for a fun-filled birthday celebration on his yacht out at sea, but it turned into a day of horror for Mr Tu Zhen Yi last Thursday when the vessel caught fire.
Before sailing out to sea with his family to celebrate his birthday, Mr Tu, 36, berthed his yacht, Wilber, at a fuel dock at ONE°15 Marina Club to refuel.
However, the dock workers were unable to fill up the fuel tank and were worried about a leak.
Afer taking safety measures, they instructed Mr Tu to start the yacht's engine for a check.
When he did so, an explosion rocked the vessel.
At that time, Mr Tu, his wife, their baby son and three-and-a-half-year-old daughter were at the front of the cabin, along with their two maids.
Mr Tu's wife told Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao: "It happened so suddenly. When I turned around, my two maids were gone.
"My husband was carrying my daughter and shouting for me to escape."
As she rushed out to safety, Mr Tu's wife saw a "black bundle" on the deck, next to the burning engine.
She took a closer look and realised it was her eight-month-old son, who was lying face-down on the deck, blackened from head to toe.
She told Wanbao: "My maid was carrying the sleeping baby when the accident happened.
"She may have dropped him in shock when running out."
According to Mr Tu, there was a second explosion on the yacht after the family were safely on the dock.
The Singapore Civil Defence Force said in a statement that it was alerted to the fire at 4.30pm, which was put out 20 minutes later.
Fifteen victims, including those on board the yacht and volunteer firefighters, were taken to two hospitals for burn injuries and smoke inhalation, and 12 have since been discharged.
According to Wanbao, Mr Tu suffered second degree burns to his hands and left leg.
His baby son, who is in a high dependency ward in KK Women's and Children's Hospital, suffered second and third degree burns.
The baby has already gone through three surgeries and will have to undergo skin grafting.
Mr Tu's maids are currently warded at SGH for burns and are in stable condition.
SCDF is investigating the cause of the fire.
- ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY ANG TIAN TIAN