Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Search continues for 9 campers trapped in landslide in Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – The search for missing campers trapped in a deadly landslide at an unlicensed campsite in Malaysia continued for a third day on Sunday, with the fire department saying the chances of finding survivors were slim.

At least 24 people were killed when a landslide ripped through a campsite early Friday in Batang Kali, a popular hilltop area about 50 km (30 miles) north of the capital, Kuala Lumpur, while campers slept in tents.

The Selangor state fire and rescue department said that of the 94 people trapped in the landslide, 61 were safe and nine were still missing. Seven children were among those killed.

Responders deployed diggers and rescue dogs to search for people trapped under mud and debris, while heavy rains raised concerns of more landslides.

State fire and rescue chief Norazam Khamis said the chances of finding more survivors were slim, given the lack of oxygen and the pressure of the soil at the site.

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A preliminary investigation showed that an embankment of about 450,000 cubic meters of soil had collapsed. The earth fell from an estimated height of 30 m (100 ft) and covered an area of ​​approximately one acre (0.4 ha).

Landslides are common in Malaysia but usually only after heavy rains. Flooding is also common, with torrential rains in seven states last year displacing some 21,000 people.

(Reporting by Mei May Chu; Editing by Christopher Cushing)

Copyright 2022 Thomson Reuters,

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