KUALA LUMPUR: Two foreign workers were killed, another had his hand trapped and partially amputated and another two narrowly escaped when a building under construction near the Gombak LRT station at Taman Melati, near here collapsed early today.
The bodies of the two foreign workers, who were husband and wife, were found embracing each other.
Kuala Lumpur Fire and Rescue Department (JBPM) director Nordin Pauzi said a Search and Rescue for the couple was mounted at 9.30am, after they received information that two workers were unaccounted for.
The bodies were retrieved at 2.07pm and 2.10pm respectively, said Nordin.
Gombak OCPD Assistant Commisioner Samsor Maarof said the SAR was mounted after the couple’s friend and a fellow worker at the construction site said he could not get in touch with them despite calling them numerous times.
The last he saw the husband and wife was at 11pm last night.
“The worker claimed that he saw the victims enter the building after they had coffee at about 11pm,” Samsor said.
He said the two dead and three surviving victims were found at different locations of the collapsed structure.
“The survivors were found safe on the ground floor, whereas the two dead victims were believed to have fallen from the top floor, with the rubble from the building crashing on top of them,” he said.
Meanwhile, a friend of the couple, Heru Susiawan, in his 30s, said foreign workers staying at the construction site often went to the top floor of the building under construction to get better phone coverage.
“I saw the couple going to the top floor at about 11pm, thereafter, I went back to sleep. At about 1am, I was awaken by a loud noise. I did not expect the couple to die in the building collapse,” he said.
Meanwhile, Nordin said out of three foreign workers rescued earlier in the day, two were Indonesian workers and the third victim a Bangladeshi national, whose hand was trapped in the rubble and was rescued at 7.16am.
“We found his hand was totally crushed and had to amputate part of it in order to extricate him,” he said.
Nordin said they had to resort to the move after receiving advice from a doctor and medical officers at the location and the victim was rushed to Selayang Hospital for further treatment.
“The collapse was believed to have been caused by the weak structure but investigations are being conducted.
“The collapse involved the entry route into the parking area and construction work has stopped for now,” he said.
Fire and Rescue Department Operations Commander M. Murugiah said they received an emergency call through the MERS 999 line about 1.13am, and fire tenders together with 46 personnel were dispatched from the Wangsa Maju and Gombak Selatan fire stations to the scene.
Meanwhile, the Department of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) issued an immediate stop work order at the construction site.
Federal Territory and Putrajaya DOSH director Husdin Che Amat said the order was issued under the Occupational Safety and Health Act 1994 and will be enforced until they find the cause of the incident as well as determine the necessary action that needs to be taken.