Batang Kali landslide: Site not listed as critical slope, says Minerals and Geoscience Dept

PETALING JAYA: The slope adjacent to Father's Organic Farm campsite, which saw a landslide on Dec 16, is not listed as a critical slope, says the Minerals and Geoscience Department.

Its director-general Hisamuddin Termidi denied reports claiming that the slope located at the Batang Kali-Genting Highlands road had been identified as a critical location.

"This is untrue and it must be stressed that the department's critical slope monitoring focuses on settlement areas and natural slopes, and does not overlap with other stakeholders.

"The slope in the landslide tragedy is not listed as a critical slope under the department's monitoring," he said in a statement on Monday (Dec 26).

A landslide occurred in the wee hours of Dec 16. A total of 61 victims were rescued while 31 victims were killed in the tragedy.

With regards to settlements or new development proposals on hillside or slope areas, Hisamudin said a risk assessment is required when developers apply for planning permission.

"For risks involving geological landslide disasters, the developer needs to appoint a professional geologist registered under the Board of Geologists Malaysia to make an assessment," he said.

Earlier this month, The Star reported that the department had listed 31 hotspots in the country which had been identified as landslide hotspots and warned that with the current continuous rain, the potential for landslides was even higher.

The department said the hotspots were in Pahang (Cameron Highlands, Fraser’s Hill), Selangor (Bukit Antarabangsa-Hulu Langat, Kuala Kubu Bharu), Kedah (Gunung Jerai, Baling), Penang (Tanjung Bungah, Paya Terubong), Negri Sembilan (Genting Peras, Jalan Seremban-Simpang Pertang), Perak (Ipoh, Kledang), Terengganu (Aring-Kuala Berang-Kenyir), Kelantan (Lojing - Gua Musang), Johor (Gunung Pulai), Sarawak (Miri, Kapit, Bau) and Sabah (Kota Kinabalu, Kundasang, Sandakan), among others.

Batang Kali was not listed.

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