Channel NewsAsia
Updated: 09/18/2013 23:06 | By Channel NewsAsia

Jem shopping mall's ceiling collapses, three injured

Jem shopping mall's ceiling collapses, three injured


Jem shopping mall's ceiling collapses, three injured

SINGAPORE: Three people were injured after part of the first-floor ceiling at Jem shopping mall in Jurong East collapsed on Wednesday night.

The latest incident follows two recent fires which broke out at the mall last month.

And the mall's tenants are concerned that such incidents will end up keeping customers away.

The Singapore Civil Defence Force said three people suffered minor injuries and had to be taken to hospital.

It is not clear what caused the ceiling collapse.

Witnesses told Channel NewsAsia that water began gushing out from the ceiling, and shortly after, a part of the ceiling fell.

They said that water had flowed to various parts of the mall.

Yusman Danny said: "I was throwing rubbish (when it happened). When I came back, I saw that the ceiling (was) full of water -- the pipe had burst. I was a bit scared."

Mohamed Ibrahim Mohamed Taib, who works at Starbucks, said: "I actually heard a very loud 'bump' sound. I actually ran towards it because I saw everybody running away. When I got there, I saw that the whole ceiling (at level two) collapsed... There was water rushing out of the pipes."

Tenants and some remaining customers managed to remain calm and evacuated from the building quickly.

Some two hours after the incident, mall tenants could be seen waiting anxiously outside. Some were hoping to be let back in, in order to check on their stores for fear of goods being damaged, while others who had evacuated in a hurry, were hoping to go back to collect the belongings they had left behind.

Jem shopping mall was officially opened on 15 June.

Its official opening was delayed by a few days due to issues with fire safety permits for the tenants.

And just last month, two fires broke out in the premises.

Tenants hope that more will be done to keep such incidents at bay.

Sazali Jaafar, manager at Earle Swensen's, said: "Now I'm sure that people might think twice about coming to Jem to shop. Who knows -- another mishap might happen. It will definitely affect business."

Mohamed Ibrahim Mohamed Taib added: "I've actually been worried more because it concerns my business. Eventually, people will be scared to come to Jem because of these incidents happening."

For now, it remains unclear what the long-term impact will be on shoppers and tenants in this new mall. - CNA/ir/de/ac

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