Dicing with danger
Some 500 families in Kampung Bukit Pulau, Kampung Paya Ikan and Kampungku Sayang want the authorities to fix the problem before any untoward incident occurs following the collapse of the road’s embankment.
Villager Asmah Samah, 46, said residents were afraid to use the damaged road but had no choice as it is the nearest route to Duyong and Bukit Katil.
“I hope the road will be repaired before anyone gets hurt,” she said.
The mother of six is also concerned for the safety of school children who use the road daily as no warning signs were placed there.
Self-employed Hamdan Ratu, 28, said the recent widening of the Parit Cina canal to prevent flash flood had resulted in the weakening of the soil above the recently tarred road.
“Cracks can be seen along the road after heavy rain has washed away the soil near the canal’s embankment more than a month ago. What the authority did to remedy the problem was to pile mangrove stilts along the edge of the collapsed road about two weeks ago,” he said.
He added that the situation was getting worse with cracks along the road widening after a downpour.
Kampung Bukit Pulau village head sidang Yunos Minin, 65, said this was the first time that erosion had caused the banks along the canal to collapse.
“Hari Raya is approaching and that would mean heavier traffic along the road.
“What would happen if there is an accident involving a car with a family in it?” he questioned.
Yunos said he was not convinced that the temporary measures were sufficient to prevent the road from caving in during heavy rain.
In relation to the matter, state Public Works and Utilities Committee chairman Datuk Gan Tian Loo said necessary steps would be taken immediately to address the issue, including directing the contractor involved with the canal project to carry out immediate repair work.
“We will look into the complaints raised by the villagers concerned. We understand their worry especially with the Hari Raya festive season approaching,” he said when contacted yesterday.
Owing to the recent wet spell, Gan said the state authorities here were holding weekly meetings to monitor the flash flood condition in the state.
When contacted, a representative from the project contractor said work on widening the canal was completed some time ago with only routine maintenance being carried out recently.
“Clearing and weeding along the embankment are carried out from time to time to allow proper water flow in the widened canal to avoid flash flood,” he said.
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