Elderly couple in Penang cheat death after falling tree wrecks home

A couple living in this house escaped unhurt when the tree fell on their home. — Picture courtesy of Azrul Mahathir Aziz
A couple living in this house escaped unhurt when the tree fell on their home. — Picture courtesy of Azrul Mahathir Aziz

GEORGE TOWN, May 9 — An elderly couple were nearly crushed to death when a tree fell on their home early this morning.

Hasshim Ahmad, 76, and his wife, Salbiah Man, 74, were sleeping in the main bedroom when the tree fell on their house in Teluk Kumbar at 3.30am.

“The loud thump woke them up and they held onto to each other as made their way out of the house slowly in the dark,” their daughter, Rosita Hasshim, recounted today.

She said the tree fell on the roof of her parents’ house and narrowly missed their bedroom. \

Lasting rains and strong winds last night had brought down the large Ketapang tree, believed to be more than 50 years old.

“My parents were still shocked by the incident due to the loud noise, otherwise they are unharmed,” Rosita said.

She said her parents will now stay with her since their house was destroyed by the tree.

“The whole roof was destroyed and some of the items inside were also destroyed due to the rain,” she said.

Work to remove the fallen tree was underway since early this morning.

Bayan Lepas assemblyman Azrul Mahathir Aziz, who visited the site, said there were some problems removing the tree as it fell on the entire length of the roof.

“We will use a sky lift to remove the tree,” he said.

Earlier today, the heavy rains led to flash floods in Sungai Dua in Northern Seberang Perai and the evacuation of 51 affected victims from the area.

The group were moved to the Dewan Muhibbah in Merbau Kudung at about 5.30am.

No casualties were reported today.