At least 7 Singaporeans injured in Genting crash

Update at 2pm: Malaysian Chinese papers have reported that the Singaporean woman who was critically injured in the crash has died.

GENTING HIGHLANDS - Just three weeks after 37 people were killed and 17 were injured when a stage bus plunged down a ravine here, another accident has occurred yesterday.

This time, however, no one was killed, although 33 people were injured. Fifteen were listed in serious condition, including one in critical condition.

The four-vehicle pile-up occurred at 3.30pm at Km31.5 Jalan Genting Sempah-Kuala Lumpur, involving two buses, a lorry and a car.

Kuala Lumpur Fire and Rescue Department assistant director (operations) Azizan Ismail said they received a call at 3.49pm, and despatched three engines with 30 firemen from Selayang, Bentong and the city.

There were 25 people in a bus from Genting Highlands, 13 on a bus from Temerloh, two people in the car and a driver in the lorry carrying tin ore.

The injured were sent to Kuala Lumpur, Sungai Buloh and Selayang hospitals.

The driver of the lorry, 55-year-old Aris Embong, said he was driving on the middle lane of the three-lane road when the bus from Temerloh hit the rear of his vehicle.

"I pulled to the side of the road, followed by the bus from Temerloh.

"Moments later, another bus hit the rear of the bus from Temerloh.

"However, I'm not sure where the Honda City figured in all this as I saw it only after it had turned turtle on the fast lane."

Initial investigations, however, revealed that when the heavy vehicles had collided, the car driver, in trying to avoid being hit, lost control of his vehicle and crashed into the road divider and turned turtle.

Kuala Lumpur Hospital (HKL) emergency and trauma department head Datuk Seri Dr Abu Hassan Asaari Abdullah said 12 people were treated at the hospital.

He said only one - Singaporean Tham Choy Chan, 74 - was in critical condition, with five others listed as semi-critical. However, she is in stable condition.

Tham sustained injuries to the head, pelvic bone and thighs. She also suffered tissue damage.

Others treated at the hospital were eight Singaporeans, a Myanmar and two Malaysians.

Malaysian Ng Sook Ming, 52, was one of those listed in semi-critical condition.

Dr Abu Hassan said 11 people were treated at Selayang Hospital, seven of whom were in semi-critical condition.

He added that doctors at Sungai Buloh Hospital had treated two people in serious condition and seven with light injuries.

"We have contacted the Singapore high commission and have informed it that we are treating its injured and the high commission is happy with that."

Selayang Hospital director Dr Siti Zaleha Mohd Salleh said the hospital had treated four Singaporeans, two Malaysians and an Indonesian.

K. Vasanda, 58, who received outpatient treatment in Selayang, said she had been asleep when the accident occurred.

She added that she had woken up during the impact but had been knocked out when she was flung forward and hit her head against the chair in front of her seat.

Additional reporting by Hana Naz Harun, Aliza Shah, Rahmat Khairulrijal and Robin Augustin