Bad weather hampers search for lost trekkers

Riverside at the Stong Mountain in Kelantan, Malaysia.

KOTA BARU - Five men and two women on an expedition to Gunung Stong and Gunung Basur, Dabong, about 150km from here, have been reported missing.

Kelantan Fire and Rescue Department chief Azmi Osman said the trekkers went up the forested area on the mountains on Dec 11.

"We are very worried about them as they only have 10 days of food rations.

"We do not have any information on their whereabouts or who they are.

"The consolation is that they are also lost with their guide, and even this, we are basing on the report from the public," he said yesterday.

Azmi said the STORM (Special Tactical Operation Rescue Malaysia) team from Selangor had a difficult task of looking for the trekkers as continuous rain in the areas had made it harder for them to scale the mountain.

In Terengganu, Bernama quoted State Fire and Rescue Department deputy director Nor Mahathir as saying that a group of 26 people comprising Survey and Mapping Department and General Operations Force personnel, who were stranded on Gunung Gagau in Kuala Berang for a few days during their trip up to the mountain, have been rescued.

"We managed to rescue the first group and we will resume the operation tomorrow to help another group of 27 people still stranded on top of the mountain," he said.