'Sleeping' man at North Bridge Road hawker centre declared dead over 12 hours later

Yong Li Xuan
The Straits Times
Mar 20, 2023

When cleaning supervisor Liu Zhen Guang arrived for work at a hawker centre at 9am on Sunday, he spotted a man who appeared to be sleeping at a table.

But the 66-year-old did not think too much about it. After all, it is common to see people sleeping at the tables at the North Bridge Road Market and Food Centre in the afternoon after busier periods, stallholders told Shin Min Daily News.

However, at 8pm, Mr Liu called for help after the man did not respond when he shook and spoke to him.

The 56-year-old man was pronounced dead more than 12 hours after he was first spotted.

Several stall owners also said they noticed the man sleeping at the table near a drinks stall and that he was first spotted at the hawker centre at about 3am on Sunday.

One of them, who did not want to be named, told Shin Min that he saw a bowl of noodles on the table when he arrived for work in the morning.

At about 8pm, when Mr Liu was about to wash the floors, a diner reminded him to wake the man up.

Mr Liu told Shin Min that he shook the man and spoke to him for about three minutes before realising that the man did not respond. He then called for help, and was told by the emergency dispatcher to check whether the man was breathing. He was not.

Said Mr Liu: “I feel a bit guilty. If I had tried to wake him earlier, maybe he could have come to and still be alive.”

The police and the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said they were alerted to the incident at 861 North Bridge Road at about 8.15pm, and a person was pronounced dead at the scene by an SCDF paramedic.

The police removed the body only at about 11pm after four hours of investigations, reported Shin Min. Based on preliminary investigations, the police said they do not suspect foul play.

The Straits Times

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