130-year-old raintree falls on newly-weds in KL

130-year-old raintree falls on newly-weds in KL
PHOTO: The Star/Asia News Network

KUALA LUMPUR - Two newly-weds were hurt, one of them critically, by a large 130-year-old raintree that fell along Jalan Ampang here.

The incident, which occurred at about 7.30am yesterday, also caused gridlock in parts of the city.

Kuala Lumpur Fire and Rescue Department director Khirudin Drahman said 10 firemen were sent to rescue the couple, whose motorcycle was hit as the tree fell.

"It occurred near Menara Public Bank in Jalan Ampang.

"The victims were sent to Kuala Lumpur Hospital for treatment.

"The motorcyclist is in critical condition while the pillion rider is stable," he said when contacted.

It is believed the husband was the motorcyclist while the wife rode pillion.

A car was also hit and badly damaged by the tree, although the driver was unharmed.

Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) workers took about two hours to cut up the fallen tree and clear the road.

DBKL corporate communications director Fadzilah Abd Rashid said the raintree appeared to be in excellent condition following inspections in April and December last year.

"However, we discovered that the tree's roots were rotting upon closer inspection.

"It can't be seen, so the fall was unexpected," she said in a statement yesterday.

Following the incident, she said DBKL had taken several measures, including appointing an arborist to conduct physical checks on trees and identifying the high-risk ones that need attention.

DBKL is also drawing up a maintenance plan for such high-risk trees.

"Arborists will propose relevant suggestions on tree maintenance, whether they can be retained, cut down and replaced, or cut down without replacement, after the physical checks," Fadzilah said.

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