SHAH ALAM, March 19 — A witness testified today that he saw a firefighter getting trapped between an emergency vehicle and parked cars while attempting to escape a mob during riots at a Hindu temple.
Testifying as the 20th witness at the inquest proceedings to determine the cause of death of firefighter Muhammad Adib Mohd Kassim, Pakistani national Budd Mohsin, 24, stated that he saw the Emergency Medical and Rescue Services (EMRS) van had reversed and subsequently trapped a firefighter against other parked cars.
Budd explained that this firefighter was located at the rear left wheel of the EMRS van when he was pinned.
“When the fire engine reversed to escape the attacking mob, it also hit the (EMRS) van behind, pushing it sideways. During this time, the van had also lightly hit the fireman from behind, on the left side of his body.
“When that happened, the fireman tried to flee towards the direction of the Caltex station. However, he was unable to do so after he was pressed between the van and other vehicles,” he told the Coroner’s Court today, referring to the USJ17 Caltex station.
The firefighter then had fallen on his back before a group of men surrounded him. However, Budd said he was unsure whether they intended to harm or help the firefighter.
He did not confirm during examination whether the firefighter was indeed Muhammad Adib.
Earlier in the day, Budd explained that he saw three firefighters exit the vehicles with two coming from the passenger side of the fire engine and the EMRS van respectively.
He also recalled that the firefighter who came out of the EMRS van was also the same firefighter who was caught between the van and other vehicles.
Budd was speaking in Punjabi to a court translator while answering questions by the court’s coordinating officer Hamdan Hamzah.
Later in the day, several videos of the incident were played in court.
Budd was also asked to confirm the location of where the firefighter was pinned and where he was standing when the incident took place.
Budd said he was present during the incident while visiting his friend who was working as a security guard in a residential area near the Seafield Sri Maha Mariamman temple last November.