A mother and her five-year-old son died on Tuesday morning after separately falling off their flat on the eighth floor of their building at the Jumeirah Lake Towers in Dubai, according to police.
Dubai police said the mother was waiting with her 15-year-old daughter for the school bus on the ground floor of the tower and left her son unattended in the apartment. While they were waiting, she saw her son dangling off the flat’s window on the eighth floor.
Upon seeing this, the mother became hysterical and rushed to her apartment, but by that time the boy had already fallen off the window. According to police, a security guard at the building tried to grasp the boy moments before he fell on the ground, but was unsuccessful and sustained injuries in the process. The boy was alive after the fall but died later, police said.
According to police, the mother rushed down after she couldn’t find her son in the flat, only to discover him lying in a pool of blood at the building entrance. She then went up to her flat and jumped off the window, with her body landing on top of the son’s. The mother died instantly. Both bodies have been kept at the morgue, awaiting the return of the woman’s husband, who was travelling but is now rushing back following the tragedy.
There was no housemaid at home when the incidents happened.
The teenage daughter who was witness to both her mother and brother’s death, is in a traumatic state of shock and is with her uncle, according to police.
Lieutenant General Dahi Khalfan Tamim, Dubai Police Chief, was following up from the operations room as soon as he was informed about the incident. Although there is no criminal suspicion, he summoned the building’s safety engineer to find out the reason for the incidents and check if the flat’s windows were safe.
Major General Khamis Al Mazeinah, Deputy Dubai Police Chief, immediately moved to the accident site to lead the investigation.
Mohammad Hassan, an engineer by profession and a neighbour of the family who lives on the same floor, told Gulf News that he heard a loud thud and a hysterical scream at around 7am. When he came out from his apartment, he saw the mother running down to the ground floor. Hassan took the next elevator and came down to find the 5-year-old boy lying in a pool of blood near the entrance of the building, with his 15-year-old sister in school uniform holding his hand and crying.
According to witnesses, the mother rushed up to her flat soon afterwards. Hassan said he, along with a few other residents and the security guard, went up to the flat a few minutes later, but could not find the mother anywhere in the apartment. “This is when we realised she had also jumped,” he said.
According to Kareema Khamis, another neighbour, the family is of Iranian origin and had moved in to the apartment only about a month back.
Watch this space for more updates and pictures.
Have your say: Are you concerned about child safety in high-rise buildings?
Do you live in a high-rise building? Are there any special precautions that you have taken to ensure the safety of your child? Do you know someone who is an expert in architecture or engineering?
In what ways do you think buildings could be made safer for children?
Share your thoughts and ideas with Gulf News. Send your views to email@example.com  or post your comments on [their] Facebook page.
By Dina Aboul Hosn and Rayeesa Absal