GEORGE TOWN: Police have recorded statements from more than 40 people in connection with the paired road construction site landslide in Bukit Kukus, Paya Terubuong.
This is a criminal negligence probe into the incident that claimed nine lives on Oct 19. Four others escaped death.
Penang police chief A Thaiveegan said more people would be summoned to shed light on what caused the landslide.
“We might be recalling a few more key people in the construction site for further questioning.
“The probe is part of a sudden death report which will look into elements of criminal negligence which may have caused the landslide.
“We will refer to the attorney-general’s office for appropriate direction,” he said when contacted.
On Oct 19, 42,000 tonnes of earth fell from a hill slope at Bukit Kukus where an elevated road was being built. It swept away 12 container cabins with 13 foreign construction workers inside.
Since then, the Penang government has set up a high-level investigation committee, comprising government officials and engineers.
Initial studies by forensic engineers from the federal Department of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) have found three likely causes of the landslide.
They found a lack of soil movement control methods, inadequate drainage to control the surface water run-off and not enough controls to check seepage water at the cut portion of the hill.
Environmentalists and activists have urged that the project be halted pending an audit on hill construction projects on Penang island.
The project is a RM530 million, 5km bypass road hugging the hills of Bukit Kukus, linking Bandar Baru Air Itam and Relau. The project is built by the Penang Island City Council and two private developers.
Construction is expected to be completed in 2020.