ANN/THE STRAITS TIMES – The bodies of four more victims were discovered under seven metres of soil at the riverside section of the site of landslide in Batang Kali, near popular tourist destination Genting Highlands.
This takes the total death toll so far to 30, with three people still missing.
“The four bodies – a male child and a female child along with a male adult and a female adult were discovered in one camp. The bodies were intact but had started to decompose,” said Hulu Selangor police officer Suffian Abdullah yesterday.
The bodies were sent to Sungai Buloh Hospital for post-mortem and identification, he added.
“We cannot confirm yet whether all of them are from the same family as the identification process has not been done,” he said.
The search and rescue operation yesterday, which involved 128 personnel, 11 excavators and seven K9 unit dogs, will continue to focus on the hillview and riverside sections, he said. “We are praying for positive leads and developments today so that the three remaining victims can be found.”
The armed forces and the police’s general operations force were also dispatched to the nearby river to check whether victims’ bodies could have drifted there.
The landslide occurred in the early hours last Friday. A total of 94 people who were camping at Father’s Organic Farm were affected. Sixty-one of them managed to escape to safety.
Father’s Organic Farm’s operators said they will not shirk any responsibility for the tragic incident that hit its campsite.
“As the operator, we will not run away from our responsibilities despite the landslide occurring on another piece of land which belongs to the government,” said the farm’s operator Frankie Tan.
“It is about two to three kilometres away from the farmland we leased. The site (of the landslide) was a large forest that had never been developed,” he said during an interview with a Chinese daily.