Officer perishes, three hurt in morning crash
By Gary Adit
Victim dies on the spot from head injuries, another seriously hurt
KUCHING: A senior Immigration Department officer was killed while his three junior colleagues were injured when the van they were travelling in spun out of control and overturned into a stream at Beratok Bridge at Mile 21 Kuching-Serian road yesterday.
The victim, identified as 45-year-old Joseph Miles Jikar, died on the spot from head injuries while the three junior officers (two men and a woman all aged 22) were rushed to hospital with one of them in serious condition.
The incident happened around 10.45am when the foursome were heading for the Immigration Depot in Semuja near Serian to pick up several illegal immigrants to be produced in court later in the day.
A lorry driver travelling behind the van, who witnessed the incident, said it was raining at the time and the van appeared to have skidded along the wet road moments before slamming into a pillar at Beratok Bridge and plunging into the small river below.
Stopping to inspect, he saw that the van had landed on its roof so immediately alerted the police.
Police, firemen and paramedics rushed to the scene after learning of the incident and attended to the victims.
Members of the public helped push the van back to an upright position.
Joseph, from Kampung Sudat at Jalan Semaba, was pronounced dead on the spot by paramedics.
Several Immigration officers rushed to the spot after learning of the tragic incident and were overcome by emotion over the sight of the victim.
The body was taken to the mortuary for a postmortem.