It was last Monday that we were travelling on the Pan Borneo Highway from Sri Aman to Kuching. It was raining heavily and as can be seen along the road there are sign of road distress at several locations. There were minor instances of visible small landslides along the road and the dirt obviously cutoff some of the roadside drainage system.
The road failure that happened last night (approximately around 8 pm) at KM77 Serian- Sri Aman road causes total cutoff of the Pan Borneo Highway and drivers were diverted to the alternative estate road. The road section subsided for about 3 meters high. Luckily, there were no casualty due to the incidence. The location of the road failure is as shown in the following map (KM77 is somewhere along the Federal Road).
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Obviously, based on the pictures in the news (referring to the pictures available on the local news paper), the road failure was due to poor drainage at the location. Heavy rainfall had caused the section of the road to fail.
Luckily, road users can still travel using an alternative estate road which is about 36 km in length. From Sri Aman to Kuching, use Krait Junction (before Semungkoi) and exit Slabi Junction. The big question mark is whether the alternative estate road can handle heavy lorries. If not, then most of major cities in Sarawak will run out of essential supplies as this road is the main access road throughout Sarawak.
Thus, it is high time already for the Pan Borneo Highway to deserve its due. As a major highway in Sarawak, the road needs to be maintained properly and need to be properly upgraded to the "highway" standard.