More cracks at Taman Keramat flats after evacuation

(Bernama pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: Cracks have still occurred at Block F of the Taman Keramat Permai flats, near Ampang, where more than 200 people were evacuated yesterday.

A resident, Ahmad Zulkarnain Ahmad, 38, who lives on the ground floor of the apartment, said he went to the fourth floor and saw serious cracks on the wall and floor.

“I did not expect the cracks to worsen … I could see the kitchen part of the unit downstairs through the cracks on the fourth floor. Following which, we were forced to evacuate to enable inspection work to be conducted,” he told reporters at the scene.

He hoped that the problem could be addressed before the fasting month, which is in about a week.

“That is the only house we have … don’t expect us to go through the fasting month at the evacuation centre. We have been told that the inspection will take three days before a decision is made on whether or not it is safe for us to return,” he added.

Another resident, Mohd Mohid Saidin, 68, who lives on the fourth floor, said the cracks had worsened over the past few days. “There have been cracks, but not obvious ones. Hope it can be addressed by the authorities immediately,” said Mohd Mohid, who has lived there for more than 20 years.

Azmi Adnan, 48, who lives at an adjacent block, said other residents at the estate also feared for their safety. “For the moment, the authorities confirmed there is no cracks at our block,” he added.

Another resident, Ahmad Zainudin, 53, said: “I was shocked to see the cracks getting bigger and spreading to other parts of the building.”

Selangor disaster management head Ahmad Fairuz Mohd Yusof said today a soil movement detector has been installed to monitor the situation. The detector was installed today and would be used to monitor the soil movement until Monday, before a decision would be made whether the four-storey building was safe for occupation.

Ahmad Fairuz said 38 people, comprising nine families, had vacated the apartment and moved to the temporary evacuation centre at Taman Keramat secondary school. More than 200 residents were ordered to evacuate their homes yesterday after cracks were found in the building.

“We ordered the occupants to evacuate the building last night and some of them opted to stay with relatives elsewhere,” he said, adding that he expected more occupants to move to the evacuation centre, where they would be provided the necessary assistance, including food.

He said activities would be organised for children and also health checks for senior citizens.

Ampang Jaya deputy police chief Supt Mohd Zaid Hassan said the police have set up a 24-hour control post at the apartment.

“Occupants who want to enter the building to get their belongings will be required to register at the post. This is to avoid any untoward incident,” he added.