NATURE lovers want the Penang National Park in Teluk Bahang to act immediately on the poorly maintained facilities on the hiking trail leading to Teluk Kampi beach.
Avid hiker Chee Chin Poh, 71, said he was baffled that the authorities could allow such unkempt conditions along the trail, which is a famous hiking spot for locals and tourists.
“It is only a matter of time before an accident happens. Someone could easily step on the broken planks along the trail.
“The wooden structure used as a resting hall also looks unstable and might just give way one day,” said Chee, who was one of 60 hikers who hiked to Teluk Kampi on Saturday.
The hikers also found poorly maintained toilets and broken benches.
“I first came here two years ago and the amenities have deteriorated so badly that it is not enjoyable to hike along the trail anymore.
“We can’t have fun because we have to pay more attention to our safety.
“This place is definitely not safe for children.
“It’s a real pity as the Teluk Kampi beach has crystal clear waters and is a great place for families.
“However, the trail hasbecome dangerous due to poor maintenance,” said Chee.
He also lamented that the park opens only at 8am.
“Most hikers are usually here between 6.30am and 7am, so 8am is quite late,” he added.
Penang Island City Council mayor Yew Tung Seang said he would get in touch with the park authorities on the matter.
He also said he would help resolve the issue as it affects tourism in the state.
“I am thankful to the hikers for highlighting this issue as safety is of paramount importance.
“We definitely want to bring more people to the park for such activities,” he said.
Malaysian Nature Society Penang branch adviser D. Kanda Kumar said he was not aware of the issue although he sits on the management committee of the park in Penang.
“We can use the maintenance funds to cover small repairs,” he said, adding that he would look into the issue.