Tuesday, March 29, 2005

House collapses into sinkholes

KAMPAR: A family of five escaped death when more than half of their double-storey house sank into at least six sinkholes at Kampung Cabang Dua in Kuala Dipang near here.

The sinkholes, measuring 3m deep and at least 2m in diameter, appeared at 12.40am on Tuesday, shortly after the earthquake struck off the coast of Sumatra.

Sections of the part-wooden, part-concrete house that collapsed into the sinkholes were the living room, a ground-floor bedroom, the kitchen, a bathroom and the porch. The sinkholes also claimed the family car.

House owner Abdul Razak Shamsuddin, 44, a technician, and his wife Norsah Rizan Abdul Mutallib, 45, an executive officer at the Batu Gajah Hospital, were in the ground-floor bedroom when they heard a rumbling sound.

They rushed out, only to fall into the sinkhole that had swallowed the living room but were rescued by their 15-year-old daughter, who had been washing clothes in the bathroom. She threw a chair into the gapping hole, enabling her parents to climb out.

The three then dashed out of the house with the couple's two other daughters, aged 10 and 14, who had been upstairs watching television.

The Star

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