Monday, September 14, 2009

Kitchen damaged by storm-felled tree

Low Kim Gok clearing the debris caused by a fallen tree which damaged the roof of the kitchen. — Picture by P.C. Lim
Source: Halim Said
Kuala Lumpur: On Aug 27, around 3pm, Low Kim Gok was busy at Sri Putramas II condominium where she worked as a cleaner. As she carried out her duties, she had an uneasy feeling that something bad was going to happen. Not far away from the condominium, Low's husband Tong Heng Heng, 48, and her 16-year-old son Tong Kok Kit were asleep in their home in Batu Estate Sentul Post settlement in Jalan Segambut. There was a thunderstorm and strong winds were blowing outside the house. Heng Heng and Kok Kit were jolted out of their slumber by a loud crashing sound from the kitchen. Rushing to the kitchen, Heng Heng was shocked to find it flooded with rainwater and a gaping hole in their roof where a tree had crashed onto it. Low rushed home after being informed by a neighbour about the incident.
"When I got home, I was trembling and could only watch helplessly," Low told Segambut member of Parliament Lim Lip Eng during the latter's visit recently. Low said City Hall workers removed the fallen tree on the same night but she was left without a kitchen. "The house is in bad shape and with the damage to the roof, we can no longer live here. I don't have a kitchen anymore and now I have to cook outside. The area is infested with mosquitoes, rats, and even cobras," said Low. Lim said the family had sought his help to secure a City Hall low-cost flat for them. "I have contacted City Hall on the matter but they have yet to confirm the availability of the flat. I will get back to them by next week," he said.
Meanwhile, MIC Segambut branch chairman S. N. Segaren said he had called City Hall on the night of the storm to clear the fallen tree and debris from the victim's house. "I am looking at helping the family get RM300 in aid," said Segaran, adding that the family needed to lodge a police report so that he could request financial aid from the Welfare Department for them.
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