TO reduce waiting time for victims’ families, the chemistry department’s DNA forensics unit is assisting in the identification of bodies in the Batang Kali landslide.
The department said in a Facebook post on Sunday (Dec 18) that the unit was playing an important role in the disaster’s aftermath by using Paternity DNA Analysis to speed up the identification of remains.
The DNA of the victims is compared to samples from relatives for the test.
“The cases for which samples received by the forensic officers on Saturday (Dec 17) morning from the police were resolved on the same day.
“The officers of are working non-stop to ensure that bodies of the landslide victims could be identified as soon as possible so that their next of kin may make funeral arrangements without further delay,” the department said in the post.
The tragedy struck in the early hours of Friday (Dec 16), as people slept in their tents at a campsite near Genting Highlands.
“I heard a loud sound like thunder, but it was the rocks falling,” Teh Lynn Xuan, 22, a witness at the site told Malay daily Berita Harian.
A hillside above Father’s Organic Farm in Batang Kali was destroyed by a landslide.
Teh added that she was camping with 40 others when the landslide struck. 61 individuals survived the tragedy while 9 more are still missing.
“We felt the tents becoming unstable and soil was falling around us. Luckily, I was able to leave the tent and go to some place safer. My mother and I managed to crawl out and save ourselves,”said Teh.
Moreover, one of Teh’s brothers was killed, and another is in hospital.
With the discovery of another body, the death toll from the landslide at Father’s Organic Farm campsite here has risen to 24.
Inspector-General Tan Sri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani said the search and rescue (SAR) team discovered the remains of a girl in Sector A of the campsite.
The victim’s body has been taken to Sungai Buloh Hospital for a post-mortem examination and identification by her next-of-kin. — Dec 18, 2022
Main photo credit: The Star