Monday, August 13, 2007

MORE PICS & Video – Malaysia Worst Bus Crash; 20 Perished, 2 Critical – Km229 N-S Expressway; Driver killed with 13 Summons & 2 Warrants of Arrest

ABOVE: Malaysiakini had the early report at 10.52 am, details H E R E . But you see more pics below.

August 13, 2007 14:57 PM

20 Die, Nine Injured In Express Bus Crash

ABOVE: The location is near Bukit Gantang, where the hills are alive with durians. At press time, 19 people who were on board the northbound express bus are reported dead while 10 others are injured, three of them critically. BELOW: Those familiar, the roads down the hills are windings an needs constant alert.

A police spokesman said the ill-fated bus was travelling from Melaka to Butterworth when it skidded while descending a hill, and crashed into a railing on the left of the road before plunging into a five-metre deep drain (BELOW).

TAIPING, Aug 13 (Bernama) -- Twenty people were killed and nine others injured in what is regarded as the country's worst express bus crash, which occurred at Km 229 of the North-South Expressway in Bukit Gantang near here today. The bus, with a driver and co-driver and 27 passengers travelling from Melaka to Butterworth in Penang, was said to have been going down an incline of the highway at about 4.30 am when it crashed through the railing on the side of the road and plunged into a ditch five metres below. The driver of the bus, Rohizan Abu Bakar, 38, was among the dead.

ABOVE & BELOW: The bus with the roof ripped off and the force of the impact, thrown almost all the passengers out and this was the reason for such a large number of fatalities

He was from Taman Seri Petaling in Kulim, Kedah. Also killed was an Indonesian national, H. Abu Bakar, who was from Medan, Sumatra. An unidentified three-year-old child was critically injured and has been admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Taiping Hospital. Also among the injured are two Vietnamese nationals and a Nepali.

ABOVE & BELOW: The fire & rescue personnel took almost three hours to extricate the bodies pinned beneath the bus and the crane assistance was needed

Taiping police chief ACP Raja Musa Raja Razak told reporters that of the dead, only 11, all male, have been identified so far. The nine others, seven of whom are female, have yet to be identified because identification papers were strewn about at the scene of the accident, he said. Besides the bus driver and the Indonesian national, the others who died at the scene of the accident have been identified as T. Krishnan, 46, of Taman Haji Muslim in Kuala Ketil, Kedah; Fadliz Ahmad, 22, of Jalan Penaga, Taman Maju in Jasin, Melaka; Josli Arshad, 22, of Jalan Dang Merdu in Jembatan Duyong, Melaka;

ABOVE & BELOW: In the early hours of Monday morning, before the body bags were available, the bodies were laid on the roadside
Nazri Noordin, 35, of Desa Baiduri in Bandar Baru Ayer Itam, Penang; Pang Tee Min, 58, of Jalan Ong Kim Wee, Melaka; Mohd Yazid Md Yusoh, 23, of Jalan Koklam Air Utama of Phase 4, Taman Maju in Jasin, Melaka; Md Basri of Kampung Pulai Darat in Merlimau, Melaka; and Kamis Said, 62, of Batu 22 1/2 Pasir Gembor, Tanjung Bidara in Masjid Tanah, Melaka.
One passenger, Shahril Efendi, 22, of Alor Star, died at Taiping Hospital at 5 pm.Besides the three-year-old child, the co-driver of the bus, P. Veeraman, 36, of Taman Sri Merbau in Sepang, Selangor, was also critically injured and is in the ICU of Taiping Hospital.

ABOVE & BELOW: Later in the morning, the bodies were properly places but the gruesome task of identifying them remains as some of missing id papers

The two Vietnamese nationals have also been sent to Taiping Hospital. They have been identified as Quang Ngoi Hung and Ngu Yeh Hui Vinh, 27. Also admitted to the hospital are Mohd Fauzi Hassan, 27; Zurina Rashid, 23; Mohd Zahidi Che Ahmad, 22; and Siew Ken Meng (male), 21. The Nepali, Chatrapati Eyam, 24, was the only passenger who was slightly injured and was allowed to leave the hospital after outpatient treatment.

ABOVE: FATAL TRIPFire and Rescue personnel assisted by policemen loading up the 19 dead bodies onto a truck, in what is believed to be one of the country's worst traffic accidents
= == = == = == = == = == = == = == = =
ABOVE: Some of the belongings were gathered for collection and BELOW: What is left of th the twisted metal rail

Raja Musa said the high death toll resulted from the body of the bus being badly smashed and the roof ripped off, which caused several of the passengers to be flung out and others to be trapped in what remained of the vehicle. He said Fire and Rescue personnel who rushed to the scene removed some of the injured passengers, administered first aid and sent them to Taiping Hospital, about 20 km from the scene of the accident. They had to use a crane to winch up the wreckage to remove the trapped bodies, he said.
Taiping Fire Station Officer Mazlan Zainal said it took the fire and rescue personnel about three hours to remove the bodies from the bus. Mazlan said fire and rescue personnel from the Taiping and Kuala Kangsar stations arrived at the scene at 4.50 am. He said the injured were sent to Taiping Hospital in ambulances.

PLUS, the toll expressway operator, closed the left lane of the highway to facilitate the rescue operation. "This is the worst accident in the nation's history," Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy told reporters after going to the scene of the accident and calling at Taiping Hospital.

In November 2003, fourteen people were killed and 28 others injured when two buses collided along Jalan Kuala Lipis-Merapoh in Pahang. Chan said a preliminary investigation indicated human negligence to be the cause of the acciden

ABOVE: That Transport Minster will make his appearance after an accident and this worst one would give him many nightmares. Calls have been make for him to step down. It is a standard response from him, "a thorough investigation would be carry out" and "it be made public?" His promise on the 3 LRT reports to be made public is still outstanding! And BELOW: He was at the hospital to shed some tears and comfort to the surviving one. And what happened to his INSTITUTE ROAD SAFETY - he sat up after going overseas with much fanfare; was it RM20 million?

Perhaps the ONLY way he can contribute to road safety in the country is to lead a team of Taoist and exorcise all the hot dirty spirit spots in the country roads . The spirits are looking for replacements! All his talk, directive and MIROS are an exercise in futility as there are NO accidents and you just cannot prevent accidents when there is Murphy's Law - which simply states that when something is going to happen, it will happen one of these days.

"A thorough investigation has begun, involving all departments and agencies, such as the police, Fire and Rescue Department and JPJ (Road Transport Department)," he said. He also said that a probe would be conducted to determine the state of fitness of the driver, looking into such aspects as fatigue, drowsiness and use of drugs.

It would also take into consideration the structure of the bus and the design of the road, he added. Chan said the ill-fated bus was registered in 1987 and was owned by Syarikat Kenderaan Bukit Gantang Sdn Bhd of Taiping. "The bus has been in use for 20 years. It was last inspected in May and received the approval of Puspakom (the computerised vehicle inspection centre)," he said. Chan said the bus had left Melaka at about 10.30 pm yesterday and had already covered about 400 kilometres. The wreckage of the vehicle has been towed to the Taiping district police station. "The bus had a driver and a co-driver. We will find out whether a change of drivers was made in keeping with the regulation requiring a switch after two hours of driving," he said. Chan said he had informed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi of the accident. "The prime minister has ordered immediate measures to be taken to enhance road safety in the country," he added

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August 13, 2007 22:23 PM

Bus Has 19 Summonses, Driver 13 Summonses And Two Arrest Warrants

TAIPING, Aug 13 (Bernama) -- The "Super Ekspres" bus that was involved in the worst crash in the country's history at Km 229 of the North-South Expressway in Bukit Gantang near here today, has been issued 19 summonses since 1991. The driver, Rohizan Abu Bakar, 38, who was among 20 people who died in the crash, had 13 summonses and two arrest warrants in his name for various traffic offences, Taiping OCPD ACP Raja Musa Raja Razak told reporters at his office. He said the bus, belonging to Taiping-based Syarikat Kenderaan Bukit Gantang Sdn Bhd, was registered in 1987 and passed Puspakom inspection in May. The bus, travelling from Melaka to Butterworth in Penang, was said to have been going down an incline of the highway at about 4.30 am when it crashed through the railing on the side of the road and plunged into a ditch five metres below. The freak accident should serve as a reminder to all drivers to be careful especially when driving at night, Raja Musa said. "Driving at night affects our focus if we are tired and there is very little traffic on the road. In today's incident, there was a slight incline but no tyre marks," he said. The cause of the crash was still under investigation, Raja Musa said.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy had said that based on preliminary investigations, the crash was probably due to human negligence. The crash scene was in Bukit Berapit, about 2 km from the Bukit Gantang rest and service area. It is quite well known for having a train tunnel under the highway and a federal road next to it.Raja Musa said fire and rescue personnel and ambulances from Taiping, Kuala Kangsar and Ipoh were also involved in the rescue effort and the clean up work was completed at about 10 am. Two police trucks were used to take the dead victims to the Taiping Hospital, he said. He also said that police would conduct more frequent checks on public vehicles, especially buses, and the drivers' records to prevent a repeat of the incident. Meanwhile, forensic experts from Kuala Kangsar, Ipoh and Parit Buntar were sent to the Taiping Hospital to help perform the autopsies. A Taiping Hospital employee said the incident had been categorised as a disaster and all staff from nearby hospitals had been instructed to assist in the rescue, treatment and post mortems. At the hospital morgue, emergency and forensic personnel were seen coming in and out while family members waited outside to claim the victims' bodies. Nearly 100 journalists including from Kuala Lumpur and Penang were here to cover the crash or do follow-up stories.

= = =
August 13, 2007 22:02 PM

No Damaged Road At Bus Accident Site, Says Samy

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 13 (Bernama) -- The tragedy that killed 20 people including an express bus driver at Kilometre 229 of the North-South Expressway near Bukit Gantang, Taiping early today has nothing to do with any road defect near the accident site, said Works Minister Datuk Seri S.Samy Vellu. He said that based on the report that he received, the road alignment at the area concerned had a good surface with a gradient profile of about three per cent, and it was a straight road. "I had sent officers and engineers to investigate the problem on the road at the accident site and based on the report received at 2 pm today, the situation there was good," he told reporters after presenting awards and scholarships from the All Malaysian Malayalee Association Foundation (AMMA) to outstanding students, here today. He said that the observation of the Malaysian Highway Authority (MHA) at the site of the tragedy showed there were no tyre marks to indicate that the bus had used its brakes on the road and it was suspected that the bus was speeding before crashing through the guardrail and plunging into the outlet culvert before landing on a boulder.

The minister said that the report also stated that the weather condition at the time was good. He said that the site of the accident was also not categorised as an accident-prone area based on the structure of the road which was straight. "I believe that the (bus) driver was possibly sleepy and had fallen asleep when he was at the wheel. That's all, nothing else," he said.
Samy Vellu said he would discuss several measures with Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy in efforts to reduce fatal accidents involving express bus drivers especially those travelling between midnight and 6 am. In the incident near Taiping early this morning, 20 people were killed while nine others were injured in the worst express bus accident in the country's history. The bus, which was travelling from Melaka to Butterworth, was reported to be going downhill before it skidded and crashed through the guardrail on the left side of the road and plunged into a five-metre culvert at about 4.30 am. The ill-fated express bus belonged to Syarikat Kenderaan Bukit Gantang Sdn Bhd from Taiping.

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August 13, 2007 21:05 PM
Today's Bus Crash Worst In Nation's History

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 13 (Bernama) -- The express bus crash in Perak early today is the worst in the nation's history in terms of casualties suffered in road accidents involving buses. "This is the worst (bus) accident in the nation's history," Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy told reporters after going to the scene of the accident and calling at Taiping Hospital.
Twenty people were killed and nine others injured in the accident at Km 229 of the North-South Expressway in Bukit Gantang near Taiping at 4.30am when the express bus with a driver and co-driver and 27 passengers, travelling north from Melaka to Butterworth in Penang, crashed through the railing on the side of the road while going down an incline and plunged into a ditch five metres below.
The biggest number of casualties in a bus accident before today's crash occurred on July 15 1996 when a bus carrying tourists plunged down a ravine at the first kilometre of Jalan Genting Highlands in Pahang. Seventeen people died and 15 others were injured in that mishap.
On Nov 20 2003, 15 people were killed and 29 others injured when two buses collided along Jalan Kuala Lipis-Merapoh in Kuala Lipis, also in Pahang. The accident occurred a few days after Hari Raya Aidilfitri.

Following are some of the past accidents involving buses, in declining order of casualties:
Thirteen passengers, two of them children, were killed when a bus skidded and overturned at the 7th mile of Jalan Pengkalan Hulu-Baling in Kedah on April 20 2001. The bus was carrying Amanah Ikhtiar Malaysia (AIM) micro-credit agency personnel from Kota Baharu to Langkawi.

Eleven people were killed and 35 others were injured when a tour bus crashed into a ditch at Km160.8 of the North-South Expressway near Jawi in Nibong Tebal, Penang, on July 30 last year.
Six passengers died and 20 others were critically injured when an express bus veered into a ravine at Km254 of the North-South Expressway near the Sungai Perak rest and recreation area in Perak on March 9 this year.
Three employees of the Provincial Electricity Authority (PEA) of Thailand were killed and 44 other people were injured when a double-decker tour bus skidded and overturned at Km13 of Jalan Genting Highlands-Batang Kali in Selangor on Nov 19 last year. The bus was returning to Thailand after a visit to the Genting Highlands tourist resort.
Two women passengers died and 23 other people were injured after an express bus skidded and crashed into a 30-metre ravine at Km251 of the North-South Expressway near the Senawang exit of the highway near Seremban, Negeri Sembilan on Dec 24 2005. The bus was said to have attempted to evade a trailer lorry which had stopped all of a sudden on the southbound left lane.
Two leaders of the Maran Umno Division in Pahang were killed and 18 other people were injured when a bus carrying Umno members was involved in a collision with a lorry trailer at Km89.7 on the northbound lane of the North-South Expressway in Sungai Petani, Kedah, on March 2 this year. The bus was one of a convoy of five.
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August 13, 2007 19:40 PM

CVLB Slams Brake On Super Express
KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 13 (Bernama) -- The Super Express bus company has been directed to stop operating immediately to allow the Commercial Vehicle Licensing Board (CVLB) to conduct an investigation. CVLB chairman Datuk Markiman Kobiran said the move followed the horror crash involving the company's bus which killed 20 people and injured 9 others at 229 km of the North-South Highway near Bukit Gantang, Taiping.

The directive had been sent to the company's office in Alor Star by fax at 1 pm," he told Bernama here today. "All 38 buses owned by the company are prohibited from operating until investigation into the crash is completed. This means that not a single bus is allowed to be on the road," he added. He said CVLB would not hesitate take stern action against the owner for ignoring the directive."CVLB does not want to hear about road accidents involving this bus company after this," he added. Describing the crash as the worst for express buses, Markiman said stern action would be taken including revoking the operating licence if it was found that the bus was in poor condition. He said a special team would be sent to Alor Star to examine all the company buses from the technical and maintenance aspects.

"We want to ensure that all the buses are properly maintained. Bus operators must not take maintenance lightly as it involve the lives of passengers," he added.

= = == =Almost a year ago, that area was in the news
Go H E RE on

MORE Pics – 5 DEAD in SPEEDING CAR-BUS Crash at Km70.6 IPOH-TAIPING TRUNK ROAD (Bukit Gantang) on 31 Aug 06; Driver with Serious Head & Body Injury


Anonymous Anonymous said...

sleepiness sensor, alcohol sensor should be setup at the driver area.

12:44 AM  

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