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My Home Was Engulfed In Flames & I Wasn’t Prepared


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As another blaze consumes a one-room HDB home in Woodlands leading to a 100-man evacuation while the World Cup final was being played, we’re reminded how important it is to be prepared for the worst.

It’s fair to say that it doesn’t happen often, but when it does, it’s devastating. Thousands of dollars of furnishings, appliances, important personal documents, and more importantly the precious memories you created while living there go up in literal flames.

I am reminded of my own close encounter with a fire at home. In fact, it was exactly 4 years ago, right around Christmas time when a Personal Mobility Device with a battery leak burst into flames within minutes of family members smelling the pungent scent of battery liquid.

We needed to act fast

In quick thinking, we moved the affected scooter and battery to the foyer area of my old home in Kovan, with the intention to mop up the battery liquid and make sure if it does blow up, it wouldn’t be near anything flammable or could easily catch on fire.

I needed to make sure it wouldn’t hurt any passers-by or neighbours as well, so we kept it within the property but in an outdoor area.

Then it happened, it started with thick black smoke, so dark you couldn’t see through it.

Right after, the same sound you hear when you light a gas stove without the ticking of the spark… and within a split second, bright orange.

Almost immediately came the heat.

Things were getting bad, quick

A literal fireball was within my home and within distance of my family members and the people I love.

I grabbed my baby sister who was 3 at the time (she’s turning 7 this Christmas day by the way) and carried her in my arms to my room next to the windows so we have fresh air to breathe as a lighter grey smoke starts to travel throughout the house as I dialed 995.

It was then up to my mother and my sister to extinguish the flame. And this is when we realized just how unprepared we were.

There was no fire extinguisher.

The most basic thing you need to protect your family from such events, and we didn’t have one.

Instead, pails and buckets of water were being filled as fast as the tap turned to its maximum allowed.

One after another, the water managed to put out the flames. You can actually see black water fill up the small floor area of my foyer in the picture above.

Safe at last

A family of 6 with ages ranging from 3 to 75 were all unharmed.

And by the time the firefighters arrived, it was a matter of understanding and retelling what just occurred.

We didn’t make the news and I’m glad we didn’t have to.

The aftermath was not a pretty sight but nothing too major was damaged. Melted grills, dark scorch marks (that were still there when we sold the house a few years later), and some crispy shoes and slippers were the remains of the incident.

Luckily, my mom did have home contents insurance and we managed to claim a few thousand dollars from our insurer. Within 2 days, we bought a fire extinguisher.

So please learn from my tale. I, too, didn’t think this would happen to me. And while we got away with it, not everyone would be as lucky. Even if everyone ends up safe, losing a lot more precious valuables could still be a huge issue.

This is why I’m letting you know that if you haven’t already done so, please sign up and claim your free home contents insurance here.

Claim your free Home Contents Insurance. Get coverage in the event of a home fire and more.

Though I hope you’ll never need to use it.

Ohmyhome is partnering with Singlife with Aviva to offer up to $130,000 of home contents insurance coverage for 1 year, all for free. The plan covers:

  • Up to $20,000 on household contents
  • Up to $50,000 on renovations
  • Up to $50,000 on family worldwide liability
  • Up to $10,000 on alternative accommodation/ loss of rent

It only takes one unfortunate accident to bust the bank, so grab this opportunity while it lasts. For more details and enquiries, WhatsApp Ohmyhome at 9755 1009. Or schedule an appointment with us right here.

IMPORTANT NOTES: Policies are underwritten by Singapore Life Ltd (“Singlife”). This is not an insurance contract. Full details of the standard terms and conditions of this policy can be found in the relevant policy contract.

Protected up to specified limits by SDIC. Ohmyhome is not an insurance agent or intermediary and is not allowed to solicit any insurance business or give advice on or recommend any product nor be involved in any discussions, negotiations, or the arrangement of any insurance contract between you and Singapore Life Ltd. Please direct all insurance enquiries to Singapore Life Ltd.

Information is accurate as of Dec 2022.

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