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Taiwanese man catches child after three-storey fall

3-year-old had been left at home unattended, was looking for her father

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Lin Feng-tien

Lin Feng-tien (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Lin Feng-tien (林峰田), a technician at a home appliance store in Tainan, made the most important catch of his life on Wednesday afternoon (Nov. 18) when he caught a young girl after she fell from a third-floor apartment.

Reflecting on the critical moment later, he said, “I’m thinking to myself: ‘I’ve got to catch her!’”

At 3:56 p.m. on Wednesday, the Tainan Fire Bureau received reports that a young girl had fallen from the third floor of an apartment building on Zhonghua South Road in the city’s South District but was caught by a shop employee on the first floor, according to CNA.

Medical personnel were dispatched to the scene, where they found the girl frightened but conscious and with no apparent trauma. Even so, she was sent to a hospital for examination.

Witnesses said the three-year-old had been crying on the apartment's window sill with her feet dangling in the air. They said she had apparently been looking for her father.

The store owner, Lin, and another technician saw the girl and sensed danger. They then gathered under the window and shouted to her, urging her back into her apartment.

The child reportedly seemed to have heard the shouts and was turning to crawl back inside when she slipped and fell off the sill. Fortunately, Lin caught her.

Recalling the situation, Lin said that he had not thought — just reacted. The girl got lucky, he added.

According to the fire bureau’s initial investigation, the girl had been home alone. Firefighters later notified the Tainan Social Affairs Bureau, the police, and the girl’s family of the situation, and the child’s father rushed home to accompany her to the hospital.

After an investigation, the Tainan Social Affairs Bureau learned that the girl lives in a single-parent home. She was indeed alone in the apartment when the accident happened.

The bureau is investigating whether the father violated the Protection of Children and Youth Welfare and Rights Act by leaving a child under six years of age at home unattended. The first offense is punishable by 4-50 hours of mandatory parental education and counseling.

Taiwanese man catches child after three-storey fall
(Tainan Fire Bureau photo)