Rough ride for rubbish trucks


Rubbish trucks have to navigate a stretch of Jalan Langat Lestari that is in poor condition, to reach Tanjung Duabelas Sanitary Landfill in Kuala Langat. — KK SHAM/The Star

Drivers urge JKR to fix potholed road to Tanjung Duabelas landfill in Kuala Langat

Rubbish truck drivers who use Jalan Langat Lestari to get to Tanjung Duabelas Sanitary Landfill in Kuala Langat, Selangor, are urging Public Works Department (JKR) to address poor road conditions along a 11km stretch.

They claim the road is filled with numerous craters and potholes, which makes it difficult to navigate on rainy days, while in the dry season, visibility is affected by clouds of dust.

Safety is also a concern as drivers have seen heavy vehicles tipping over after hitting a deep pothole.

Private rubbish disposal contractor Mohamad Rafik Ibrahim, 29, who has been using this route for six years, said road conditions started deteriorating in October last year when lorries carrying sand for the construction of an industrial park began using the road.

“Because of the bumpy ride, I am beginning to experience backaches.

“My vehicle repairs have also become more frequent.

“My vehicle’s leaf spring suspension cracked and a replacement cost me RM3,000.

Nor Haszma: About 1,000 vehicles use this route to the landfill daily.Nor Haszma: About 1,000 vehicles use this route to the landfill daily.

“Another time, my fuel tank sprang a leak after it was hit by a loose stone and I had to pay a welder RM150 to patch it up,” said Mohamad Rafik.

He said these repairs ate into his already limited income.

“I can only make RM30 per trip (from Teluk Panglima Garang to the landfill) on my two-tonne lorry,” he added.

Compactor lorry driver Mohd Azemy Mansur, 46, who has been using the route for a year, said punctured tyres were a common problem for road users there.

He has also heard about more serious problems with older vehicles.

“If a permanent solution is not possible in the near future, JKR should at least patch up the potholes first,” he said.

He added that although Jalan Langat Lestari might be in a rural area, it was the sole route to the sanitary landfill.

“If our trucks are damaged because of poor road conditions, it is going to affect rubbish collection and in the end, it will be the taxpayers who suffer,” said Mohd Azemy.

Mohd Azemy: Punctures are a common problem for road users.Mohd Azemy: Punctures are a common problem for road users.

Worldwide Holdings Bhd landfill operation head Nor Haszma Mohd Hashim, 41, said he had met with JKR twice over the problem.

He explained that 3km of the road came under the purview of Worldwide, the company that owned the Tanjung Duabelas Sanitary Landfill, while the remaining 8km stretch was under JKR.

He added that about 1,000 heavy vehicles used this route daily.

According to Nor Haszma, JKR had, during the meetings, said a new access road would be built and in the meantime, maintenance would be carried out.

However, construction had been delayed for the past two years.

“Our employees park about a kilometre from the road entrance and take a four-wheel-drive (4WD) vehicle in.

“This was implemented after we started getting emergency calls from our staff who were stuck halfway after their vehicles broke down or because the road had flooded after heavy rain,” said Nor Haszma.

He worried that rubbish contractors might use the poor road conditions as an excuse to dispose waste at an illegal dumpsite.

When contacted, JKR said it was aware of the situation but did not comment on the issue at press time.

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