Dining table shatters while family was asleep in Ang Mo Kio home: They didn't dare to leave their rooms

Submitted by Stomper Ling

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The residents of a unit at Ang Mo Kio Avenue 5 were stunned when they heard what sounded like a gunshot go off in their living room on Feb 4 at around 3am.

It turned out that the glass top of their dining table had suddenly shattered, scattering fragments throughout the living room.

Stomper Ling, a friend of the family, told Stomp that everyone was sleeping when the incident occurred.

"They were scared," she said.

"They only heard a loud sound like a gunshot.

"They did not dare to come out until the next morning when they found shattered glass all over the floor."

Ling added that it was fortunate that the glass shattered while everyone was sleeping and not while the family was having dinner.

"All of them would be disfigured and sent to the Accident & Emergency department in a hospital!" she said.

Stomp spoke to Ling's friend Rosaline, who lives in the unit the table exploded in.

She told Stomp that the table was bought about a year ago and that its surface was tempered glass.

"This is actually the second glass top from the shop I bought the table from," she said.

"Initially, the first glass top they sent had some issues and cracks on it so they sent us another one but now, this happened."

Last year, around the same time in February, Stomp published a report on a similar incident that happened to a family in Punggol.

Stomper Sia Meng heard a sudden loud sound and found that his dining table had shattered everywhere.

According to glass experts, spontaneous shattering occurs only in tempered glass.

However, such cases are not common and when tempered glass implodes, it shatters into small pieces with rounder edges than that of normal glass, reducing the risk of injury.

Experts said tempered glass is about four times stronger than untreated glass as it is strengthened through heat, reports The Straits Times. 

But the tempering process creates surface stress which, combined with nickel sulphide inclusions created during the glass manufacturing process, can cause the glass to spontaneously shatter months or years later.

Consumers with safety concerns related to household electrical, electronic and gas products or consumer goods can contact Spring.