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Another accident linked to Malaysia's MRT construction causes 3-hour traffic snarl in KL

Published on Aug 25, 2014 3:42 PM
Several precast concrete blocks, meant for Malaysia's MRT line in Petaling Jaya, fell off the trailer transporting them onto a road, causing a traffic congestion that lasted for more than three hours. This took place just a week after a 690-tonne overhead concrete span collapsed at the MRT construction site, killing three Bangladeshi workers. -- PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Just a week after a 690-tonne overhead concrete span collapsed at an Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) construction site in a township in Petaling Jaya, killing three Bangladeshi workers, a second incident has MRT Corp scrambling to do some damage control.

This time, several precast concrete segments fell off a trailer onto a road, causing traffic congestion near the Billion roundabout flyover along Jalan Cheras, Kuala Lumpur at 11am on Sunday. The segments were being transported to the Pudu launch shaft located near Jalan Bukit Bintang.

The driver of the trailer, carrying 16 segments destined for an MRT tunnel, had to make an abrupt stop to avoid hitting a vehicle in front. As the trailer swerved to avoid a collision, 12 pieces of concrete tunnel lining segments fell.

Although no one was hurt in the incident, it caused a traffic congestion that lasted more than three hours as workers cleared the road.

Initial information available showed that the driver had 23 years of lorry driving experience and had already attended the induction course for transporting segments, carried out by the tunnelling contractor for all lorry drivers.

MRT Corp said the concrete segments were removed by 3.30pm.

It was understood that 10 of the segments weighed around 2.3 tonnes each, while the other two weighed nearly a tonne each.

These precast segments are joined inside a tunnel boring machine to form rings that line the entire length of the MRT tunnel.

In last Monday's incident, three Bangladeshi workers were killed, which led to the prompt resignation of MRT Corp chief executive Azhar Abdul Hamid.

The next-of-kin of the three Bangladeshi workers will receive RM25,000 (S$9,877) compensation each, said Human Resources Minister Richard Riot.

He said on Monday that the government is in contact with the Bangladesh Embassy here and awaiting their verification of the beneficiaries, "We do not want the money to fall in the wrong hands.

“We will release the money as soon as the embassy completes its verification," he told reporters.