Worsening floods spread to Kelantan


(MMO) – Kelantan today became the fourth state to be struck by the annual monsoon floods which have already hit Johor, Pahang and Terengganu.

As of 4pm, 436 people had been evacuated in Kelantan, bringing the number of people moved out of their homes in all the four states to 33,365. A total of 8,250 people had been evacuated in Johor, 19,750 in Pahang and 4,929 in Terengganu.

Pahang seems to be the worst affected of the four states. More than 1,000 sub-stations of Tenaga Nasional Berhad in several districts were flooded, forcing the electricity company to disconnect power supply to 62,907 consumers for 12 hours up to this afternoon. Power supply has been restored in stages to the affected areas.

 The state capital, Kuantan, was almost paralysed after power and water supply was cut off in most areas. Shops and offices had to close.

TNB also disconnected power supply in Kemaman, Terengganu, to about 5,000 consumers after 141 sub-stations were flooded as of 2pm. The power outage resulted in stalled pumps of Syarikat Air Terengganu, leaving about 7,500 consumers in several districts without water supply since early today.

The situation in the flood-hit states could only worsen as the weatherman has forecast more rain.

The Malaysian Meteorological Department today issued an orange-stage heavy rain warning for several areas in Kelantan, Pahang and Terengganu, saying that the rain was expected to continue until tomorrow.

In Kelantan, the 436 evacuees are from Mengkebang and Olak Jeram. They are being housed at five relief centres.

They were forced out of their homes after the Sungai Kelantan and Sungai Lebir burst their banks. As at 4pm, the level of Sungai Kelantan at Tangga Krai was 25.28 metres, above the danger point of 25 metres, and at the Guillemard Bridge, 16.30 metres (16 metres).

The level of Sungai Lebir at Tualang was 35.56 metres, above the danger point of 35 metres.

The level of the other rivers in Kelantan are reportedly rising as rain continues to fall in many of the interior areas. 

No major roads have been closed and neither were there reports of casualties.

In Pahang, the evacuees were being sheltered at 73 relief centres in five districts, namely Kuantan (12,007 at 46 centres), Rompin (3,982 at 10 centres), Pekan (2,750 at nine centres), Maran (1,005 at seven centres) and the rest at one centre in Jerantut.

Reporters encountered difficulty operating as most of them are based in Kuantan which has been almost paralysed by power outage and disruption of water supply.

The authorities have advised people in other low-lying areas to be prepared to evacuate as rain has been forecast until tomorrow.

Several roads remain closed as stretches have been flooded, even more than one metre deep at some places. 

These include parts of Jalan Sungai Lembing/Sg Charu-Kuantan; Jalan Gambang-Maran at Bukit Gambang Resort; Batu 3, Jalan Kuantan-Gambang near the Giant Hypermarket; the junction of Bukit Rangin and Jalan Cherating-Kemaman near Chendor.

In Johor, the number of evacuees had risen to 8,250 this evening from 7,106 in the morning.

The portal of the National Security Council reported that Mersing had 5,694 people at relief centres, Segamat (1,081), Kluang (975), Kota Tinggi (212), Muar (217) and Batu Pahat (71).

The latest to be hit by the floods are Sungai Suloh and Seri Merlong near Batu Pahat as well as Kampung Orang Asli Sedohok, Kampung Orang Asli Air Pasir, Kampung Orang Asli Kuala Sengka, Kampung Orang Asli Pucur, Ladang Zamrud and Kampung Kolam Air near Kluang.

The stretch at Batu 18 of Jalan Sungai Ara-Kota Tinggi is impassable to all vehicles while Km16 of Jalan Kota Tinggi-Mersing has been reduced to a single lane due to a landslide near the Industrial Training Institute there. 

Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin advised people in the state to look after the safety of themselves and their families.

He said in his Facebook account that they should cooperate with the authorities engaged in evacuating people to relief centres.

In Terengganu, 1,443 more people have been evacuated in the three affected districts of Kemaman, Dungun and Hulu Terengganu, raising the number of evacuees in the state to 4,929.

Thirty-six relief centres have been opened in Kemaman, five in Dungun and 17 in Hulu Terengganu.

Meanwhile, the Terengganu Drainage and Irrigation Department reported that the levels of several major rivers in the state were at the danger point.

The level of Sungai Kemaman at the Banho Bridge was 20.08 metres (danger level 19 metres); Air Putih Bridge, 15.27 metres (14 metres) and Tebak Bridge, 19.37 metres (19 metres).

The level of Sungai Dungun at Kuala Jengai was 26.12 metres (21 metres); Jerangau Bridge, 13.39 metres (12.5 metres) while the level of Sungai Menerong in Hulu Terengganu was 25.1 metres (24.5 metres).