MUAR: The state government has urged the Public Works Institute (Ikram) to study the land structure of SK Bukit Kepong, here, after a 21m-long retaining wall collapsed and damaged part of the school.
The retaining wall, measuring 4.5m high, gave way at around 5pm on Tuesday after a downpour.
The incident caused blocks of concrete bricks to crash into the school’s hall, which was located beside the wall.
Fortunately, nobody was injured in the incident but the crash damaged three entrances to the hall and blocked the drainage system.
Johor Health, Environment, Education and Information Committee chairman Datuk Ayub Rahmat called for Ikram to investigate the matter to prevent the incident from reoccurring and causing more harm in future.
He said initial reports received on the incident showed that the collapse was due to a fault in the rainwater drainage system to contain rainwater flowing from the roof because of the lack of a rainwater down pipe (RWDP).
“Rainwater absorbed into the wall and into the ground.
“We also found that soil was used as a foundation behind the concrete wall compared to compact sand which is usually used for such walls,” he said after visiting the school.
Ayub also expressed concerns that there might be problems with the drains, that had caused the water to seep into the soil resulting in lateral pressure against the concrete wall.
He said the damage was estimated at more than RM150,000 and Ikram had been notified.
“I have also asked for Ikram to conduct a thorough structure study of the school and its surroundings to prevent similar incidents from repeating,” he said.
For the time being, Ayub said a tarpaulin sheet would be placed at the wall to prevent water from seeping into the soil and prevent soil movement.
Johor Education Department director Shaharudin Sharif said Ikram would go to the school this week to assess the situation and come up with a necessary plan.
“After this, the school can start clean-up work. We hope the whole process can be completed as soon as possible before school session resumes,” he said.
He also said that if work was not completed in time, the area would be cordoned off and the school session would not be affected as the impact had only damaged part of the school hall.