KOTA KINABALU: A man attempted in vain to rescue his family from a fire that killed five people, including four children at their home.
Sudirman Hajar, 40, suffered burns to his head and hands as he tried to save his family members at Kampung Menara Pamilaan in Sabah’s interior Tenom district, about 200km from here.
Neighbours rushed him to the Tenom district hospital, where he is being treated for burns. His condition is reported to be stable.
The five dead were Sudirman’s wife Khatijah Omar, 35, their sons Sakirin Sudirman, nine, and Zahid, six, and daughter Sapura, three.
The fifth victim was Khatijah’s niece Adira Suhaili, 12, who had come to stay with the family for the holidays.
They were likely to have died of smoke inhalation in the fire that broke out at about 12.30am on Tuesday while they were asleep.
According to witnesses, Sudirman was awoken by the blaze that had already engulfed the house and it was too late for him to alert the family.
A spokesman for the Sabah Fire and Rescue Department said they received a distress call at 12.46am and a team in two fire engines from Tenom town was dispatched.
He said they managed to put out the flames by 1.25am.
“We are still trying to establish the cause of the fire and the losses, which also included a car, ” he said.
Tenom police are also investigating the case.
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