M’sian fried chicken hawker, 58, faints & falls face first into hot oil, dies

The hawker's older brother said he suffered from high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

Fiona Tan | September 21, 2023, 06:00 PM



A man in Malaysia fainted while he was frying food at his hawker stall and fell face-first into the wok of scalding hot oil.

He was still breathing when he was conveyed to the hospital but eventually succumbed to his injuries.

The 58-year-old man was known to be an animal lover, who not only took care of 11 dogs at home, but also fed stray cats and dogs during his free time.

Well-known in Kuala Kangsar

Malaysian Chinese-language China Press reported that the deceased was Liu Youcai (transliteration from Hanyu Pinyin).

China Press wrote that Liu, who was more commonly referred to as "Big Brother Cai", and his Western food stall hawker stall of 20 years were well known in Kuala Kangsar in Perak, Malaysia.

Liu was known for his never-changing attire of a singlet vest and slippers while his stall was known for its affordable RM6.50 (S$1.90) fried chicken chop and rice.

Image from China Press.

Image from China Press.

Incident happened on Sep. 19

Liu was reportedly frying up his signature fried chicken cutlet and some fries at his stall located within Pusat Makanan Kuala Kangsar when he keeled over, falling face first into a wok of scalding hot oil at around 1pm on Sep. 19, 2023.

Image from Foursquare.

Image from China Press.

A man, who was helping out at Liu's stall and witnessed the hawker falling, hurriedly called on the other hawkers to help lift Liu up and to call the ambulance.

Liu was reportedly still alive and breathing at the time.

Image from Sin Chew Daily.

Passed away at hospital

He was conveyed to a hospital, but his injuries were too severe, and he passed away less than 1.5 hours later at 2:21pm.

According to Sin Chew Daily and China Press, Liu suffered second degree burns on his face, chest and back and smoke inhalation.

Liu's older brother told the media at Liu's wake that Liu would be cremated on Sep. 21.

Image from China Press.

Had frequent dizzy spells

The older Liu said that Liu suffered from high blood pressure and high cholesterol while another hawker said that Liu also frequently complained about having dizzy spells.

The older Liu said he had advised Liu to take care of his health but Liu did not heed his advice as business at his stall was booming.

Liu, who was single, was a workaholic who worked six days a week. He would also return to his stall during his rest day on Monday to prepare ingredients.

Liu would open his stall for business at 8am and the food would be sold out from as early as 1pm on good days.

Loved animals

Liu was reportedly also an animal lover.

Besides housing 11 dogs in his home, he would also take the time to feed the stray cats and dogs on his way to and from the hawker stall during its non-operating hours.

He personally prepares the animal's food, consisting of rice, sweet potatoes and fish.

China Press reported that Liu would spend as much as RM2,000 (S$583) each month on animal feed.

According to Sin Chew Daily, six of Liu's dogs have been adopted since his passing.

Liu is survived by four siblings and two god sons.

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Top image from Sinchew Daily and China Press