Two dead, 10 feared buried alive in Penang landslide
Last Update: 19/10/2018
GEORGE TOWN, Oct 19 (Bernama) -- Two foreign workers died, one was injured and at least 10 more are feared to have been buried alive following a landslide today at a construction site of the paired road at Jalan Bukit Kukus in Paya Terubong near here.
The two killed in the incident, which happened at 1.56 pm, have been identified as Indonesian Samsul Asman, 19, and Bangladeshi Attrul, 35, said Penang Fire and Rescue Department director Saadon Mokhtar.
He also said that three of the 10 believed to have been buried alive have been identified based on information from relatives and a colleague. They are Indonesians Bahktiar and Sobri, whose wives confirmed they were missing, and a Myanmar man whose disappearance was pointed out by a colleague.
“We were informed that seven other foreign workers are also trapped in the landslide, based on information from their colleagues,” he said at a press conference at the site.
Saadon said there were plenty of pieces of shattered containers and huts in the debris.
He said it had been confirmed that six containers and a kongsi had stood on the hillslope where the landslide occurred and did not discount the possibility of other containers having fallen under the debris.
“I was informed that there were kongis close to the containers but I cannot confirm how many have been buried in the landslide,” he said.
He said the landslide triggered earth movement that caused the containers and kongis to slide down with the debris for about 50 metres.
Saadon said the Special Tactical Operation and Rescue Team of Malaysia (STORM) from the Kedah and Perlis Fire and Rescue Department is helping out in the operation which is expected to go on late into the night, depending on the weather and light.
He said they would also enlist the help of the K-9 sniffer dog unit from the Fire and Rescue Service headquarters in Putrajaya which is on its way and expected to arrive later tonight.
He said the search and rescue teams, comprising about 200 people, are having difficulty operating safely because of the soft ground and soil movement and lack of space for heavy machinery to get to the scene.
The search-and-rescue personnel are from various agencies, including the police, Health Ministry medical teams, Civil Defence Force, Penang City Council, project contractor and volunteer firefighters, he said.