JITRA - The concrete wall of a building, believed to have been illegally turned into a shopping mall, collapsed along with its roof and ceiling.
Fortunately, the incident occurred just about an hour before the mall was to open for business yesterday morning at the Bandar Darulaman Industrial Complex here.
Two maintenance workers, who were conducting a routine inspection inside the CMart Wholesale, escaped unhurt.
No casualties were reported.
Kubang Pasu municipal council president Zahari Ismail said the building was to be used only for storage purposes, as per the business licence, and not as a mall.
He said the complex had been ordered to be closed.
"The council is in the midst of investigating the owner for using the building as a mall as the permit states that it is to be used only as a storage unit," he said.
"The 30 stalls in front of the mall were also ordered to cease operations while investigations are being conducted," he said at the scene.
Jitra Fire Station operation chief Mohamad Darus said his personnel were checking to ascertain if the materials used could have led to the collapse.
"It was raining heavily last night," he added.
One of the workers, Abdul Rohim Talib, said the incident occurred at about 8.45am.
"I was about to leave the apparel section when I heard loud rumblings, followed by the collapse," he said.
"Luckily, no one was inside the mall at that time as the operating hours begin at 10am," he added.
Intra Gold Sdn Bhd property manager Kim Lin Teng said the mall only started operations in July, adding that the building had been left vacant previously.