KUALA NERUS, Feb 26 — The Malaysian Fire and Rescue Department (JBPM) will set up a committee to look into the cause behind the recent drowning of rescue diver Mohd Izwan Illias, 42, in Butterworth, Penang.

Its director-general Datuk Nor Hisham Mohamad said that the committee had two weeks to identify the cause of the fatal accident.

“The committee is set up because we have a Workers’ Occupational and Safety Manual. The investigation will be carried out by the headquarters to study the situation that led to the incident,” he told reporters here today, adding that the investigation would consider all aspects, including the use of safety equipment, the ability to extricate themselves at the initial stage and the department’s work procedures when carrying out a task.

“It’s pretty straightforward when we operate... procedures on boat movement requires two personnel with life jackets on. But this recent incident occurred when the victim wanted to park the boat after conducting repairs.


“So, the investigation will see if our procedures covers this brief element of work process and we will review at the department level and will be used for improvements,” he said when commenting on the fatal accident that occurred during the maintenance of a boat at the department’s Mak Mandin Marine Base Jetty on Thursday night.

Mohd Izwan’s body was found the next day after a 19-hour search and rescue operation.

In other developments, Nor Hisham said that 325 drowning cases were recorded throughout the country last year, with Terengganu recording 23 cases involving 29 deaths.


“According to records, Terengganu does not show a drastic decline as the state has major drowning risks, including rivers, tourist spots and the sea with a long coast,” he said, adding that it represented a major challenge and steps needed to be taken, including providing initial education to society about the importance of having basic swimming techniques and the ability to assess dangerous areas. — Bernama