Fire scare sparks panic at iconic St John’s Institution


  • Nation
  • Tuesday, 18 Feb 2020

Cause for concern: Firefighters containing the situation as they investigate the source of the smoke. Cause for concern: Firefighters containing the situation as they investigate the source of the smoke.

PETALING JAYA:
Sparks from an air-conditioning unit caused panic at St John’s Institution, the 116-year-old iconic boys’ school in Bukit Nanas, Kuala Lumpur.

The basement of the school’s Arts Block emitted dense black smoke, causing concern that the building was ablaze from beneath, according to a statement from the St John’s Institution Alumni Association (SJAA).

The Arts Block is one of the main buildings of the school that houses mainly Form Five students, teachers and the canteen operators.

“The cause of the spark is currently being investigated by the Fire and Rescue Department and an official announcement on the matter is expected in due course.

“principal Manmohan Singh activated the Emergency Evacuation Plan swiftly upon sounding the fire alarm. Everyone was safely mobilised to the safe zone (basketball court).

Keeping their distance: Students and teachers in the designated safe zone at the school’s basketball court watching the smoke coming out from the Arts Block.Keeping their distance: Students and teachers in the designated safe zone at the school’s basketball court watching the smoke coming out from the Arts Block.

“An official statement from the school will be shared once it is made available. We thank you for your concerns and certainly look forward to your continued support, ” the statement said.

When contacted, St John’s Parent-Teacher Association chairman Datuk Azaddin Abdul Aziz confirmed the incident around noon yesterday.

“Thankfully, there was no fire – just sparks and heavy smoke, ” he said, noting that students were all in order during evacuation.

“It is important for schools to carry out drills so that students are aware of the steps to take during emergencies, ” said Azaddin who was present at the scene.

Meanwhile, SJAA president Isham Ishak said the safety of students, teachers and all parties concerned will always remain the highest priority of the school.

“All necessary steps will be taken by the school to ensure that the matter will not happen again in the future, ” he added.

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