14 people feared buried in Penang landslide (Updated) - Video

GEORGE TOWN: Fourteen people are believed to be buried alive in a major landslide to hit Penang this morning.

Two dead bodies have been pulled out of the debris around 10am and 10.45am about an hour plus after the incident.

The victims are believed to be construction workers.

Penang Island City Council (MBPP) mayor Datuk Maimunah Shariff said further investigations will be carried out to determine the exact cause of the landslide.

She said the cause yet be known but ruled out the possibility of wet weather as island did not experience any rain last few days.

In the 8.57am incident, a huge tide of dirt and debris fell on a housing construction site next to the Tenby International School in Lengkok Lembah Permai.

The state fire and rescue department is leading the rescue efforts together with all federal and state agencies.

The authorities are surveying the area to determine if evacuations need to be made as there are residential in the area.

Northeast district police chief ACP Anuar Omar, in a statement, confirmed the incident and said search and rescue operations were being carried out at time of writing.

Nonetheless, Tanjung Bungah Residents Association chairman Meenakshi Raman urged authorities to view into the incident seriously.

She said state government must urgently address this to avoid another untoward incident.

She added this kind of incident should not happen as illegal hill development should not be taking place at all cost.

" Please stop all these," she said when met along with other concerned residents.

Meenakshi said people should look this incident seriously although it involved foreigners, adding human being lives are precious.

Former Penang Island City Council (MBPP) councilor Dr. Lim Mah Hui also weighed in urging the state to take concrete action.

Bukit Bendera MP Zairil Khir Johari who is on the scene confirmed incident of the missing victims.

Zairil urged all quarters not to speculate, saying the incident was confined to a construction site.

A remedial action can be taken if a post-mortem revealed that the landslide occurred due to soil erosion.

He said that for now, the relevant authorities are scurrying around to locate answers to what has happened.

One of the trapped victim's brother, Mohd Awal Jafra Alma, 21, quickly rushed to the scene when informed of the incident

Awal, works at a nearby construction site said he was ready for any eventuality happened towards his brother Abdul Rahman,18.

Bukit Bendera MP Zairil Khir Johari who is on the scene confirmed that there are unconfirmed reports of up to 20 people are missing.

Out of 20 who believed to have been submerged under the debris, one is believed to be a Malaysian while the rest are foreigners.

Zairil urged all quarters not to speculate, saying the incident was confined to a construction site.

A remedial action can be taken if a post-mortem revealed that the landslide occurred due to soil erosion.

He said that for now, the relevant authorities are scurrying around to locate answers to what has happened.

More to follow

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