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KUALA LUMPUR, March 3 — Two women were crushed to death after parts of a flyover still under construction collapsed onto their vehicle in an incident along the Sungai Besi–Ulu Klang Elevated Expressway earlier this evening.
The two deceased, both local factory workers in their 40s, were pronounced dead at the scene, with three more passengers, two men and one more woman, surviving the incident but suffering serious injuries.
Kuala Lumpur Fire and Rescue Department director Nordin Pauzi said rescuers took more than two hours to remove enough debris and parts of the incomplete flyover to access to the trapped victims, after responding to the distress call at 6.23pm.
“At 8.53pm the first survivor, a 47-year old man who was driving the van was successfully extracted from rubble where he suffered serious injuries,” he said.
Nordin said the following two survivors, a 51-year old man and a 54-year old woman, were removed from under the ruins at 9.15 and 9.17pm, before being rushed to the closest hospital.
“At 9.19 pm, the fourth victim, a woman in her 40s, was pulled out where she was later pronounced dead by Health Ministry (MOH) officials on site.
“Then at 9.26pm, the final fifth and final victim, also a woman in her 40s, was successfully removed from under the rubble and also later pronounced dead at the scene by MOH officials present,” he said in a statement today.
Separately, Kuala Lumpur Traffic Investigations and Enforcement Department chief Assistant Commissioner Zulkifli Yahya earlier said that investigations suggested the incomplete flyover collapsed after it was struck by a lorry transporting an excavator.
Zulkifli was later quoted by Malay daily Berita Harian saying the victims had been on their way to work before tragedy struck.
He was quoted saying the vehicle that struck the live construction site was actually a trailer that collided with one of the beams supporting the incomplete flyover.
“Based on initial information, the trailer laden with steel was not overloaded. The trailer was also escorted by a patrol car,” he was quoted saying in the report.
Zulkifli added the driver of the trailer has since gone to lodge a report at the Sungai Besi police station.
The incident earlier this evening blew up on social media after pictures and videos of the collapsed flyover were widely circulated and shared online, adding on to the already bumper-to-bumper rush-hour crawl.