Wednesday, August 21, 2013

37 dead in Genting bus crash

Five and a half years have passed since this blog was established, the safety of our public transportation have remained in a sorry state. I still see many express buses speeding on the road, many stage buses which are not road-worthy so on and so forth. Promises were made by ministers, politicians and authorities after each fatal accident but they were never fulfilled.

Folks at Suruhanjaya Pengangkutan Awam Darat (SPAD) have worked tirelessly over the last 3 years and the same folks have presented many brilliant ideas and proposals to SPAD's Member of Commission to transform Malaysia's public transport at the annual strategic meeting. Unfortunately, I have not seen any implementation over the years. What are the Members of Commission for? Did they escalate these ideas to the Prime Minister's Department or do they have other priorities?

PETALING JAYA: Thirty-seven people were killed in the country's worst road tragedy, after a bus carrying 53 plunged into a 60m ravine near Genting Highlands around 2.45pm Wednesday.

The dead included 24 males and 13 females. Sixteen people were injured in the incident.

The search and rescue operation was called off at 10pm.

According to Fire and Rescue Department deputy director-general Datuk Soiman Jahid, the dead included the driver of the bus.

It is believed that the driver had lost control of the bus, which then rammed a divider before plunging down the gorge.

Some of the passengers were flung from the bus during the incident.

According to the police, more than half the passengers on the bus were foreigners, from China, Bangladesh and Thailand

The bus was also overloaded as its capacity was 44 passengers, authorities said.

The accident occurred at KM36 of the Genting-Kuala Lumpur road, some two kilometres from the Chin Swee Caves Temple, as the bus carrying 53 people was coming down from Genting Highlands and heading towards Kuala Lumpur.

Pahang Sultan Ahmad Shah and Bentong MP Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai were among those who arrived at the scene earlier in the evening and were briefed by authorities.

Earlier, rescuers worked frantically to reach people trapped in the bus. Some 30 policemen and nine ambulances were at the scene.

Traffic in the area was at a standstill as police ensured rescue vehicles could reach the scene of the accident.
Bentong OCPD Supt Mansor Mohd Noor confirmed the incident to The Star but could not give further details.

"I can confirm that there were passengers on the bus but how many there were I don't know yet.
"Authorities are en route to the site now," he said.

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