5-Year-Old Girl Drowns In Bukit Timah Condo Pool After Mum Goes Home To Use Toilet & Prepare Dinner

Girl Believed To Have Fallen Into Pool & Drowned When Mum Wasn’t Around, Motionless Body Found By Security

When a child tragically passes away in an accident, the parents in their grief may question whether they could’ve done anything to prevent it.

That may be the case in the story of 5-year-old Liu Jiabao, who drowned in her condominium pool in Oct 2020.


When that was happening, her mother was at home as she needed to relieve herself and cook.

Tragedy took place in Bukit Timah condo

These details were revealed during a coroner’s inquest into the death last Friday (7 May), reported Lianhe Zaobao.

The tragedy took place on 8 Oct 2020, at The Asana, a condominium on Queen’s Road in  the Bukit Timah area.


That day, Jiabao’s mother brought her down for a swim at about 6.10pm.

She probably wouldn’t have realised that simple outing would end up in tragedy.

Mother went back home

Shortly after bringing her child down to the pool, her mother quickly returned home, leaving her there.

That would be the last time she saw her daughter alive.

The woman went home because, according to Zaobao‘s report on the inquest, she had to relieve herself in the toilet.

After that, she decided to stick around to prepare food for dinner.

Wave believed to be when child fell in water

After the girl was left alone, her actions could only be seen from CCTV footage that was played in court.

In the video, Jiabao could be seen walking around the edge of the pool.

She then returned to the jacuzzi pool, and ran to the side of a pool at another corner.


At 6.20pm, a wave suddenly emerged from a position that couldn’t be seen by the camera.

The water slowly settled, and Jiabao’s swimming board could be seen floating away.

The investigation believes that was the moment when she fell into the water and drowned.

Mother comes down after 20 mins away

The mother came back down at 6.31pm, according to Zaobao – 11 mins after the wave.

She had spent about 20 mins away from the girl.

From the CCTV footage, the woman couldn’t find her daughter after searching the pool area for awhile, so she approached the security guard.

The guard then found the girl floating motionless in the pool, her head facing down.

He retrieved her from the pool, and she was sent to hospital where she lay unconscious for 3 days before her parents reluctantly decided to pull the plug.

Case similar to another one in 2017

The sad case is reminiscent of a similar one that took place in 2017, when 6-year-old Sherlyn Ler died after a near-drowning in Kallang Basin Swimming Complex.

6-Year-Old Girl Drowns In Kallang Swimming Pool, Father Sues SportSG For Negligence

In that case, her mother also took her eyes off her for awhile, as she was on the phone and chatting to others.

Her swimming coach and 2 lifeguards also didn’t notice that the girl was in trouble until it was too late.

Sherlyn’s father has filed a negligence lawsuit against the coach and lifeguards, as well as Sport Singapore.

No one wins in this case

Just like Sherlyn’s parents, Jiabao’s parents are probably be hurting from the unspeakable tragedy of losing their precious child.

Like many cases of children drowning in pools, these fatalities may have been avoided if somebody had been paying attention to what the child was doing.

However, it’s unwise to ascertain blame for the deaths until the exact circumstances are known. What’s certain is that ultimately no one wins.

MS News sends our condolences to Jiabao’s family. May she rest in peace.

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