KUALA LUMPUR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - People living and working at the busy Golden Triangle in Kuala Lumpur experienced a triple whammy on Wednesday after part of a road adjacent to the construction of an underground tunnel collapsed.
Motorists were caught in a massive traffic snarl while the monorail service from the Imbi and Hang Tuah stations was suspended indefinitely for safety precautions.
To make things worse, there was an unscheduled water disruption in the area due to a burst pipe apparently caused by the sinkholes near the upcoming Pudu Underpass project by Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).
On Wednesday, two sinkholes were separately formed at about 10.30am and 12.20pm following the collapse of part of the road.
The condition worsened as a further cave-in caused the two sinkholes to merge into a huge indentation hours later.
Commuters of the LRT Ampang line were forced to exit at the Imbi monorail station and proceed to the Hang Tuah LRT and monorail interchange.
A statement issued by the authorities said that several areas, including Jalan San Peng, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Jalan Pudu, Jalan Alor, Jalan Loke Yew, Jalan Mesui, Jalan Hang Tuah, Jalan Imbi and Jalan Davis, were suffering from low water pressure.
"DBKL has appointed a contractor to repair the pipe so that water supply can resume in the areas," the statement said.
Meanwhile, Rapid Rail Sdn Bhd CEO Khairani Mohamed said the Kuala Lumpur Fire and Rescue Department had advised them to temporarily halt their monorail service to avoid further impact to the soil erosion.
"The monorail structures are still intact and our contractors have placed devices on the monorail piers near the worksite to monitor the situation," he said in a statement.
However, Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, in a statement issued at 6.30pm, said that a broken water pipe had caused water to seep into the area and weaken the soil structure, resulting in the initial 6-metre sinkhole.
He expected remedial work to take about two weeks to complete.