- Twitter screenshot / vanessajulan_
Three people died and 41 were left injured on Tuesday (Dec 4) in an explosion at CityOne Megamall in Kuching, Sarawak, New Straits Times (NST) reported.
Out of the injured, four were seriously hurt, NST said.
The incident at 3.35pm is believed to be caused by a leaking gas cylinder.
Sarawak Fire and Rescue Department chief Khirudin Drahman reportedly told NST that initial investigations revealed that the gas tank which exploded was being used for welding work at fast food restaurant Nene Chicken.
— mariposa (@vanessajulan_) December 4, 2018
Khirudin also said that the three casualties were killed when the walls collapsed on them after the explosion, Malay Mail reported.
Hopefully no one is badly injured or died. Explosion in City One mall Kuching. pic.twitter.com/WcoF4bNEAc
— The I̷l̷l̷o̷g̷i̷c̷a̷l̷ Malaysian (@MalaysianLalang) December 4, 2018
According to New Straits Times, Khirudin said that more than 30 personnel were dispatched upon receiving a distress call.
The deceased were identified by the Civil Defence Department as Sarawak natives O Kui Lim, 49 and Tchee Kiam Jong, 24, as well as Chin Hsien Loong, 29, from Penang.
According to Khirudin, two of the deceased were employees of Nene Chicken, which was undergoing final preparations for its opening the next day.
The other was a construction worker involved in renovations at the premises, New Straits Times reported.
Many netizens have expressed disbelief, sorrow and condolences for those affected by the tragedy.
thankful fo not sending my daughter for her #piano class at #CityOne Mall in #Kuching 😌#nasty incident there & sharing these photos forwarded; feeling sorry for those injured @zt000tz @twt_stupid pic.twitter.com/rkijEZP4pr
— Edwin Chandra Nurdjajadi (@EdwinNurdjajadi) December 4, 2018
My heartfelt and condolences to the deceased and affected families of gas explosion at City One Megamall Kuching Sarawak
— andytelasai (@andytelasai) December 4, 2018
Following the explosion, the mall’s management said on its Facebook page that the mall would be closed with immediate effect until further notice.
Nene Chicken also took to Facebook after the incident. In a post, the restaurant said it would provide updates to the incident.
“Our thoughts are with all those affected by the incident,” it said.