Officers assess damage to Mt Kinabalu trails following quake

Officers assess damage to Mt Kinabalu trails following quake
Heavy losses: The Laban Rata hostel on Mt Kinabalu was badly damaged during the June 5 earthquake.

KOTA KINABALU - A team of officers from several agencies visited Laban Rata, near the summit of Mount Kinabalu, for the first time in more than a month after the mountain was hit by a 5.9-magnitude earthquake.

The officers from Sabah Parks and the Fire and Rescue, Public Works and Meteorological Services departments spent a day to assess the earthquake damage on the mountain.

Among the sights that greeted the team was the badly damaged Panar Laban rest house, which was among the facilities near the summit hit by rock and boulder avalanches in the June 5 quake.

"We are carrying out an assessment of the restoration work on the mountain trails and other facilities. It was quiet and there were no signs of fresh avalanches around Laban Rata," said Ranau Fire and Rescue Department chief Jimmy Lagung.

State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun had said that the authorities were hoping to reopen Mount Kinabalu to climbers by September.

He said the restoration work on the climbing trails near the summit was being carried out with the aid of mountaineering experts.

Four mountain guides were among 18 people who were killed in avalanches during the earthquake.

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