Migrant workers lose all to fire in quarters

  • Nation
  • Monday, 13 Aug 2018

BUTTERWORTH: A cluster of foreign workers quarters was razed to the ground in a fire at a construction site here.

It took less than 30 minutes for the fire to destroy the five makeshift houses containing 25 rooms, which housed workers building a condominium in Jalan Harbour Place, Bagan Dalam.

The flames and black smoke rose up to the carpark floors of an adjacent condominium, sending the residents there in a frenzy to drive their cars out of the floors for fear that the heat would damage their vehicles at about noon yesterday.

A worker said most of the workers were not in their homes as it was a Sunday and they were out shopping.

“But we lost all our belongings,” he moaned.

No casualties were reported.

Local Government Committee chairman Jagdeep Singh Deo, who regretted their unsafe living conditions, said out of five foreign worker dormitory complexes approved, the one in Bukit Minyak was expected to be ready by October.

He said foreign worker dormitories would not only improve their well-being and safety, but also address the issue of workers crowding out locals in residential areas.

“About 93,000 foreign workers are registered as living in Penang, and the number of illegal workers are about the same,” he said.

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