Missing Perhilitan ranger found safe

NAZIRUL ROSELAN

LIPIS: Missing Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) ranger Tarmizi Ahmad Japli has been found safe.

State Fire and Rescue Department deputy director Mohd Sani Harul said search and rescue (SAR) team members found the 30-year-old ranger some five kilometers from the base camp at about 4pm today.

Tarmizi went missing at the Yong Forest Reserve in Taman Negara on Aug 11.

Mohd Sani said Tarmizi who appeared a little weak and tired would be taken to the base camp to allow the medical team to check on his health condition.

"Tarmizi will be allowed to rest today and he will be airlifted out from the national park area tomorrow morning for further treatment," he said in a statement.

Tarmizi's family - parents, wife and four children - from Kelantan who have been staying in a homestay in Lipis since he went missing have been informed about the latest development.

Attached to the Kota Bharu Perhilitan office in Kelantan, he was involved in the first national tiger count study when he got separated from his friend as they were following a river route.

Seven individuals including Tarmizi were involved in the programme. The incident happened when five of them were returning to the camping spot when three of them followed a trail while two others walked along the river bank to retrieve a camera (used for the tiger count).

Tarmizi and his colleague who were following the river route got separated before his friend noticed that he was missing and the rest of the team lodged a report with the authorities before SAR operations were mounted to track his whereabouts.

Checks revealed the base camp site was located 13km from the national park entrance and due to the hilly landscape it would require several hours to travel on foot.

On the day he went missing, Tarmizi was carrying a backpack which contained mineral water bottles and also some packets of chocolates. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd