KENINGAU: Residents here were shocked when a magnitude 3.0 earthquake hit the town about 11.16am yesterday.
According to a statement from the Malaysian Meteorological Department, tremors could be felt around the epicentre at Latitude 05.03 North and Longitude 116.3 East, which is some 11km east of Keningau town.
The department said it was monitoring these developments and would update the public on the latest information.
Tremors were also felt in some government department buildings, shops and houses around town. However, no cracks in buildings were reported.
District police chief Deputy Superintendent Robert Salisip @ David told the media that there were no reports received by the police in relation to the incident.
“We have contacted all divisions of the district police headquarters here but did not get any report about the incident,” he said.
Robert also confirmed that he and his personnel were all inside the district police headquarters building here at the time and did not feel the tremors when it was reported.
Meanwhile, district Fire and Rescue Department deputy chief Sabri Mohd Hassan said he had received reports from Inland Revenue Board (IRB) employees here on the tremor.
He said IRB staff had called and reported that the tremor was felt in their building and asked for the department to come and examine the safety of their building.
“We sent a rescue unit to IRB and checked the condition of the building inside and outside, but did not find any cracks,” he said.
In relation to the incident, Sabri advised the public not to panic but to stay calm in all their dealings and continue to inform the authorities of any untoward incidents occurring in their area.
“If such an emergency happens, immediately open doors to check the availability of exits for evacuation because earthquakes can tighten doors, making it difficult to open.
“Do not rush out but look for the nearest shelter such as a table and cover your head,” he said.
Sabri said to prevent fires they should turn off all equipment that could cause a fire.
Meanwhile IRB staff members Immu Utas, 44, and her colleague Catherine Johnie, 49, said they felt the tremors, thereby causing the staff to leave the office and gathered at a car park building.
An inspection by the Fire and Rescue Department and the Public Works Department (PWD) found no cracks as a result of the tremor.
A resident Martin Limar who lives at Taman Juta here also felt the tremor at about 11.15 am.
He said the water tank in his house shook and pieces of furniture swayed.