Death of a Singapore Civil Defence Force Full-Time National Serviceman
14 May 2018
At about 9.20pm on 13 May 2018, CPL Kok Yuen Chin, a Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) Full-Time National Serviceman from Tuas View Fire Station, was found unconscious at the bottom of the fire station’s pump well. The pump well is a reservoir of water used by fire station personnel for training and for testing the pumps of fire engines. CPL Kok had been celebrating his impending ORD with his squad mates, and one of the activities involved getting him into the pump well.
CPL Kok did not resurface. A number of SCDF personnel jumped into the pump well to locate CPL Kok, but they were unsuccessful. CPL Kok was eventually pulled out from the well after the water had been drained. Cardio-pulmonary resuscitation was immediately administered by a paramedic, followed by the use of an automated external defibrillator. CPL Kok was then conveyed by ambulance to Ng Teng Fong General Hospital. CPL Kok was pronounced dead at the hospital.
The Police are conducting investigations, on what had happened, including how CPL Kok fell into the pump well, and whether any person(s) are criminally responsible. Based on preliminary investigations, two SCDF regular personnel have been placed under arrest, today, 14 May 2018.
A Board of Inquiry will also be convened to look into the case, and full details will be made public in due course.
SCDF is saddened by his death and extends our deepest condolences to his family. We are providing all necessary assistance to the family during this difficult time.
Based on preliminary investigations, it appears that the mishap arose as a result of activities which SCDF has prohibited. Severe punishments and deterrent action have been meted out in the past to personnel who engaged in unauthorised activities. We continually educate our personnel, including during their foundation courses, briefings at recruit and specialist levels, as well as at periodic intervals, to make clear to our officers the risks of such activities and that they are prohibited. They are also warned by their Commanders. SCDF also has a whistle-blowing programme in place to help identify irresponsible behaviour. SCDF will be conducting briefings in all its fire stations and bases, and check again whether there were any such activities in the recent past.