Penang local councils ordered to inspect trees after Jalan Macalister incident

GEORGE TOWN: The state government has instructed local councils to inspect all trees on Penang island and the mainland following trees falling along Jalan Macalister on Sunday (May 12).

State local government committee chairman Jason H'ng Mooi Lye said a memo has been sent to the Penang Island City Council (MBPP) and the Seberang Perai City Council (MBSP) requesting immediate action in relation to the incident.

"I expect both councils to send me a complete report by this week," he said to reporters after the launching ceremony of the Upgraded Sungai Nibong Bus Terminal Project (TSN) here on Tuesday (May 14).

H'ng said that over a million trees in the state are under the supervision of local councils and were monitored during scheduled routine inspections.

He added that both local councils have officers who conducted monitoring and patrols and both councils appointed contractors to trim the trees.

H'ng said that if there were complaints about unsafe trees, the local councils would take appropriate action to prevent any unwanted incidents.

"Under the Local Government Act, if a tree has reached a certain circumference, it is prohibited from being cut down. Approval must be obtained from the local council committee," he said.

On Sunday (May 12) a huge angsana tree on the left side of Jalan Macalister uprooted and fell during a downpour in the 10am incident.

The tree toppled across the road and crushed another angsana tree, which then fell into the compound of the parking lot, damaging four cars that were parked there.

There was no one on the scene at the time, so no injuries occurred. Both trees are believed to be about 100 years old.

A woman who was in the MPV with her son also miraculously escaped death after the uprooted tree nearly crushed her vehicle as she drove along the road.

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