SETIU: Two girls who were celebrating completing their UPSR examination drowned while taping a dip at the Boardwalk Lagoon here, yesterday.
The body of Nor Hafizatul Nabihah Mohd Jaffar, 12, was found at 2.27pm, while Nur Qumairah Qistina Mohammad Nizam, 12, was found at 4pm near where they are reported to have drowned.
The girls had been at the lagoon with two friends – Nur Ain Najihah Abdul Rani and Aisha Syakirah Ishak – who also encountered trouble while in the water, but they were rescued by members of the public and a member of the Water Rescue Team (PPDA) unit who was at the scene.
“The bodies were found by the PPDA at a depth of 30 feet, at the bottom of the river. This is the second drowning case in two months in the same area.
“Most of those who come here hunt for mussels. They tend to get engrossed in their pursuit and risk straying into the deeper parts of the river with strong currents, or are caught by the high tide,” Setiu Fire and Rescue Department (JBPM) chief Mustafa Ismail told reporters at the Kampung Gong Batu fishing jetty here.
The four friends were Year Six pupils at Sekolah Kebangsaan (SK) Kampung Rahmat, Setiu and it is understood that a family member of one of the victims was among them.
Mustafa said 20 officers and firemen from the Setiu, Jertih, Besut and Kuala Nerus stations, including a PPDA unit, rushed to the scene for a search and rescue operation after a call was received at 12.33pm.
“The bodies were handed over to the police and sent to the Setiu Hospital for further action,’’ he added. — BERNAMA