Flood situation worsens at east coast

KOTA BHARU, 2 Dec 2019: 

More people are being evacuated in Kelantan due to the floods, with 5,636 people from 1,621 families being accommodated at relief centres in seven districts in the state as at 7am today – compared to 2,652 victims, involving 781 families, last night.

According to the Social Welfare Department’s InfoBencana, 3,231 of the evacuees (970 families) are at 18 flood relief centres in the Pasir Mas district, and 739 people from 209 families have been evacuated to seven relief centres in the Kota Bharu district.

In Pasir Puteh, 611 people from 165 families have been evacuated to seven relief centres, while in Bachok, there are two flood relief centres with 256 people from 60 families.

The other flood affected districts are Tanah Merah, with 371 evacuees (50 families) at eight relief centres, Machang, with 219 evacuees (65 families) at six relief centres and Kuala Krai, with 209 evacuees (50 families) at five relief centres.

According to the Drainage and Irrigation Department’s website, at http://publicinfobanjir.water.gov.my, the water level in three rivers in Kelantan has exceeded the danger level.

Sungai Golok in Rantau Panjang, Pasir Mas, rose to 10.47m – exceeding the danger level of 9m, from 10.37m last night.

The water level of the same river taken at Jenob in Tanah Merah was 23.98m (danger level is 23.5m) and the reading of Sungai Kelantan in Kuala Krai was 25.07m (danger level is 25m).

The water in two rivers has risen above the warning level, namely Sungai Lebir in Tualang, at 33.96m (warning level is 31m) and Sungai Kelantan in Kusial, at 15.81m (warning level is 14m).

Three rivers showed readings that exceeded the alert level. They are Sungai Galas at Limau Kasturi and Dabong , and Sungai Kelantan at the Customs Jetty.

The Kelantan Social Welfare Department (JKM) has placed various essential supply, including food, at 209 forward bases in preparation for floods in the state.

Director Said Sidup said the food supply included rice, canned food such as sardine, chicken curry, coffee, sugar, milo and mineral water, which would then be distributed to the flood relief centres.

“The Kelantan JKM received an initial allocation of RM1 million from the federal government and RM300,000 from the state government for the purpose.

“The state government has also approved an emergency allocation if the need arises.”

He said 50 of the forward bases are in Kuala Krai, followed by Kota Bharu (33), Tanah Merah (33), Pasir Mas (29), Tumpat (16), Gua Musang (14), Machang (8), Pasir Puteh (8), Jeli (15), and Bachok (three).

Said said the department had also identified 63 suppliers, such as Giant, Mydin, Econsave, Tesco and Pantai Timur Mart, to provide the necessary essential items.

“So far, the supply is enough to accommodate the needs of 13,000 victims for three days.”

In Kuala Terengganu, the flood situation seems to worsen with a drastic increase in the number of evacuees, from 2,387 people (650 families) last night, to 5,807 people (1,719 families) as at 8am today.

A total of 55 flood relief centres were opened since early today to accommodate the new evacuees, bringing to 121 the total number of flood evacuation centres that were opened since floods hit the state.

Terengganu Malaysian Civil Defence Force (APM) director lieutenant colonel Che Adam A Rahman said Besut is the worst affected district, with 1,787 evacuees (484 families) at 45 relief centres, from 1,312 evacuees (345 families) at 31 relief centres last night.

“The floods in Hulu Terengganu also worsens with 18 new relief centres opened since early today to accommodate 1,751 evacuees (553 families) , from 296 evacuees (94 families) at 15 relief centres last night. This brings to 33 the total number of flood relief centres in the Hulu Terengganu district.

“Setiu also recorded an increase in the number of flood evacuees, from only 296 people (94 families) at 15 relief centres last night, to 1,691 people (523 families) at 28 relief centres today.”

The Drainage and Irrigation Department’s website showed five rivers in three districts in recorded reading of above the danger level at at 7 am today.

Two of the rivers are in Setiu, namely Sungai Nerus in Kampung Langkap and Sungai Setiu in Kampung Besut. The other rivers are Sungai Berang at Kampung Menerong and Sungai Telemong at Kuala Ping , both in Hulu Terengganu, and Sungai Besut at Kampung La in Besut.

In Pahang, the flood situation remains the same with three people still at a relief centre in Rompin.

Meanwhile, severe flooding in several areas in the Hulu Terengganu district left about 30 tourists from five families stranded at a mosque in Kampung Pasir Dula, here.

The families took refuge at the mosque yesterday as the main road to Kuala Berang town was cut off, with the water-level rising up to a metre.

Shaarani Ismail, 40, who was on holiday with his wife and four children said the family had long been looking forward to the trip to the East Coast.

“I worked in Terengganu 10 years ago before moving to Perak. So, with the holiday, I also thought it would be a good opportunity to visit the former caregivers of our children in Seberang Takir.”

Shaarani said he was relieved when the Village Community Management Council (MPKK) helped out by placing the family at the home of one of the villagers.

Kampung Pasir Dula MPKK chairman Mohd Azmi Ton Busu, 48, said all the tourists, who were from Perak and Penang, had been placed in villagers’ homes while waiting for the floods to recede.

Separately, a decomposed body without the head, legs, and arms was found on a beach in Kampung Pasir Putih, Merchang here yesterday afternoon.

Marang district police chief DSP Mohd Zain Dris said the unidentified body, a male, was found by villagers at 3.30 pm who then informed the police.

“The victim was found without a head, two arms and both the lower legs and is believed to have died between 10 and 15 days before being washed ashore.”

Mohd Zain said investigations found no element of crime in this case and the body was taken to the Sultanah Nur Zahirah Hospital for a post-mortem.

Those with information regarding the case are urged to contact Marang IPD at 09-6182222.

Meanwhile, Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bhd (KTMB) has announced some changes involving train services from the Tumpat, Wakaf Bharu, and Pasir Mas stations due to the monsoon season in the East Coast.

KTMB corporate communications chief Ahmad ‘Asri Khalbi said in a statement passengers scheduled to depart from the three stations should instead board the train from the Tanah Merah station.

“Train No 27 scheduled to depart from Tumpat to JB Sentral at 6.50pm, will now begin its journey from the Tanah Merah Station at 7.49pm,” he said, adding that the changes would remain until further notice.

Ahmad ‘Asri said passengers could make changes to the date and time of their respective journeys, or cancel their trip for a full refund.

“KTMB also urges passengers to get the latest updates on train operations in the East Coast by contacting the 24-hour Customer Service Centre at 03-22671200.

“Updates are also available through the official website at www.ktmb.com.my or ‘ktmberhad’ (Facebook), ‘ktmbofficial’ (Instagram), @ktm_berhad (Twitter).”

– Bernama