KUALA TERENGGANU: Three siblings, aged between five and 10, are feared drowned after being swept away by waves while playing on the beach at Teluk Lipat, Dungun, in the Malaysian state of Terengganu on Sunday (Dec 30).
Dungun fire and rescue station chief Saifuddin Muhammad said the three children, Nurain Sasabila Zawawi, 5, Nurain Sufia 8, and Nurain Fatma, 10, from Rantau Panjang, Kelantan, were spending the holidays with their relatives.
It was learned that during the incident their parents were not with them as they had stayed back in the village.
"According to initial report Nurain Sasabila and her elder sister, Nurain Sufia were enjoying the breeze on the beach with their aunt.
"It is understood that a huge wave came in and the children were swept towards the sea. The eldest sister, Nurain Fatma tried to rescue her siblings but was also swept under the rising tide,” Saifuddin said.
He added that a rescue team rushed to the scene when they were alerted to the incident at 7.09pm. A search and rescue operation was mounted with the assistance of the Royal Malaysian Police, the Civil Defence Force and the public.
"For the time being, we are only combing the shores as it is getting dark and the waves are too big.
"The operation will resume tomorrow morning with the help of the K9 tracker dog and scuba diving units," he said.