FLOOD : Kuantan town centre almost paralysed, 37,100 evacuated in 4 states

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KUANTAN: The flooding in Pahang has almost paralysed the town centre and surrounding areas when there is no electricity and water supply in most parts while the flooding in the state, Johor, Terengganu and Kelantan has seen over 37,127 people evacuated.

Pahang topped the list with 22,395 people evacuated followed by Johor (8,705), Terengganu (5,393) and Kelantan (639) as of 10pm.

Two people are feared missing in the flood water in Sungai Isap in Kuantan.

In PAHANG, 22,395 people had been moved to relief centres in the state as of 10pm with the flood now spreading to Lipis.

Kuantan which is severely affected by the flood, saw the highest number of evacuees at 14,044 , followed by Rompin (4,144),  Pekan (3,061),  Maran (1,005), Jerantut (130) and Lipis (11) 

Bernama quoted a spokesman of the police flood operations room that 40-year-old Jamal Ali, a Pekan Umno committee member, and his teenage son, identified only as Megat, were moving their belongings to a boat at about 8.30 pm in Sungai Isap when they fell into the floodwaters. 

Kuantan OCPD ACP Mohd Jasmani Yusoff, when contacted, confirmed the incident but could not provide details as yet. 
 
"The search-and-rescue team is looking for the victims," he said.
 
Bernama learnt that Jamal and his son had used their own fibreglass boat to transfer their belongings. 
 

With so many evacuees in Kuantan, causing severe congestion in the existing flood relief centres set up, Pahang Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob said some would be shifted to relief centres set up at the army camps.

He said he had instructed the army to set up new relief centres after seeing the hardships that the victims had to bear.
 
"Some centres were also inundated with flood waters, and some of the centres did not have enough food as there were too many of them," he noted.
 
He said he informed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak about his decision to let the victims take shelter at the army base, such as at Kem Batu 10 and the Galing General Operations Force base.
 
"The prime minister agreed and directed me to act immediately. I will hold a meeting with senior officers at the camps involved and other security forces," he told reporters after visiting the centre at Sungai Isap here today.
 
Adnan had also told the elected representatives who were attending the Umno General Assembly in Kuala Lumpur, to return home and help the people in their constituencies.

Some 8,402 people had been evacuated in Johor and 4,929 in Terengganu, and another 479 in Kelantan, bringing to he number of people moved out of their homes in all the four states to 32,698.

 
The Malaysian Meteorological Department today issued an orange level warning of continuous heavy rainfall in several areas of Kelantan, Pahang and Terengganu until tomorrow.  
 
It said the heavy rains, with intermittent moderate rains, were forecast for Kuala Krai, Kelantan; Kuantan, Pekan, Rompin and Maran in Pahang; and Dungun, Kemaman and Hulu Terengganu in Terengganu.   
 
It also issued a yellow level warning of heavy rains for the same period in Jerantut, Pahang; Besut, Setiu, Kuala Terengganu and Marang in Terengganu; Tumpat, Kota Baru, Pasir Mas, Tanah Merah, Machang, Pasir Puteh and Bachok in Kelantan; Sik, Baling and Padang Terap in Kedah and Hulu Perak, Perak.  
 
The rains are expected to cause floods at low-lying areas.  
 
In KUANTAN,  the phone lines and handphone coverage are unstable, making it difficult to reach the police and other agencies. 

Tenaga Nasional Berhad in a statement said they were forced to cut off supply after 1,072 electrical substations in several districts in Pahang were flooded, affecting 62,907 consumers as of noon today.

The substations were located in Kuantan/Gebeng, Rompin, Maran, Pekan, Kuala Lipis and Jerantut. Power supply has been restored in stages in these affected areas.

TNB said they also shut down the Main Entry Substation (PMU) in Geliga, Kemaman in Terengganu for safety reasons at noon today and 141 substations were
 
also shut down since 21 hours ago affected 5,272 consumers in the state.
 
 
 
 
 
 
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.
 
 
 
 

Meanwhile, Kuantan Fire and Rescue operations centre said although the heavy rain has stopped, the flood water had risen in many areas including Sungai Isap and Indera Sempurna while the roads to the East Coast Expressway are also impassable to light vehicles.

 

 

 

"We are operating using a generator set as there is no electricity since last night.

"Our men are also facing difficulties to evacuate the victims as the water rose so fast in several areas while the flood relief centres are already full," he said when contacted today.

Checks made in the town area showed that most of the business premises were closed while several fuel stations and grocery stores opened were swarmed by panic motorists.

BERNAMA report said water and electricity supply have been cut off in most areas in Kuantan while roads in and around the town are inundated by up to one metre of water.

 
It is the same in the suburbs and villages in the vicinity of Kuantan where floodwaters are reported to have reached up to two metres.
 
 
Members of the press also encountered difficulties to operate as most of them are also based in the town.
 
Residents in low lying-areas and housing estates around Kuantan were also directed to be prepared to move out as rain had yet to abate and furthermore a a rip tide at the mouths of Sungai Kuantan and Sungai Lembing tonight. 
 
Several relief centres were experiencing problems on food supply and other basic necessities as they had been cut off due to the floods.
 
Meanwhile, the country's major telecommunication operators also see service interruptions at some of the flood-affected areas were due to the power grid shutdown by Tenaga Nasional Bhd.    
 
The power grid shutdown affected DiGi services, mainly in the southern part of Kuantan and some areas in Kemaman. 
 
"We are currently working closely with the relevant officials to restore our services by phases, based on the accessibility to the sites affected and safety of our field team.    
 
"We will continue to monitor the situation and ensure our service is restored as soon as possible," DiGi said in a statement here.
 
Another telco source told Bernama that they are monitoring the situation closely due to the severity of the floods.    
 
 "The floods are quite bad and even some of our staff have to be evacuated from the affected sites," he said.      
 
The source said the Telco will kick start back-up power after the power grid is shut down, but now back-up power in some areas was in a critical stage.
 
 
In JOHOR, the number of its flood evacuees rise to 8,705 tonight, up from 8,250 this evening.   
 
A spokesman of the Johor Police flood operations room told Bernama they were being sheltered at 63 flood relief centres.
 
He said the Pontian and Ledang districts were the latest to be struck by floods. Two relief centres were opened in Pontian late this evening to house 303 evacuees and one in Ledang to accommodate seven evacuees. 
 
The number of evacuees rose from 5,694 to 5,711 in Mersing; from 975 to 1,005 in Kluang; from 212 to 223 in Kota Tinggi and from 71 to 175 in Batu Pahat. 
 
In Segamat, the number of evacuees dropped from 1,081 to 1,064 while in Muar it remained at 217.   
 
Seven roads were closed, including Jalan Semaloi, Lopuk Melikai, Jalan Teluk Lipat and Jalan Aris in Mersing. 
 
Also affected were Jalan Johor Baru-Mersing, near Kota Tinggi, which is not accessible to light vehicles while Jalan Japi-Bukit Tempurung and Jalan Felda Meloi in Segamat are closed.
 

Batu 18 Sungai Ara-Kota Tinggi was not passable to all vehicles after the water level there rose as high as four metres, according to Mersing police chief DSP Zulkifli Hashim. 

Only one lane was open at Km16 Jalan Kota Tinggi-Mersing due to a landslide nearby the Institut Latihan Perindustrian (ILP) there. 
 
Also closed are the stretch of Jalan Perepat-Sedili at Km40 and a stretch of Jalan Johor Baharu-Mersing at Km78 near Felcra Sungai Ara, and Jalan Johor Baharu-Mersing at Km59 and Km73.
 
 
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, the situation worsened with the flood now spreading to Marang after Kemaman, Dungun and Hulu Terengganu. 
 
The National Security Council portal said 5,393 were evacuated as at 10pm compared to 4,929 people earlier today with 68 relief centres opened.
 
It said Kemaman was the worst affected with 3,224 people evacuated,  Dungun (1,035), Hulu Terengganu (1,121), Marang (13).
 
The town is almost paralysed with no water and electricity supply and almost 3,000 residents forced to evacuate as at 7 pm today, with more expected later due to the high tide.  
 
Matters were made worse when Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) had to cut off electricity supply to prevent short circuits in the affected areas, leaving most relief centres in darkness. 
 
Petrol stations faced problems too as they need electricity to operate the pumps causing long lines of motorists at stations on the outskirts of the town. 
 
Meanwhile, Cukai experienced massive traffic congestion due to several main roads inundated by flood waters up to 0.5 and 1.5 metres.
 
Multimedia and Communication minister and Kemaman Umno deputy chief Datuk Ahmad Shabery Cheek and several Umno Youth delegates to the Umno general assembly in Kuala Lumpur rushed back to Kemaman to help the relief work there.
 
Shabery's deputy Datuk Jailani Johari who is also the Hulu Terengganu Umno chief also rushed back from the general assembly at afternoon today as the number of flood evacuees in the district rose to 1,106.
 
 
Several main roads have been closed including Jalan Jerangau-Jabor in Dungun which was shut to all traffic after floodwaters reached a metre high.
 
It was the same situation with Jalan Cukai-Air Putih in Kemaman with the water level 0.5 metre deep and Jalan Ajil-Kuala Berang in Hulu Terengganu (0.9 metres). 
 
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). 
 

The National Security Council has deployed its Smart team of 32 members to Terengganu to help in the search and rescue mission, as floods worsened in the state today.

The flood also disrupted more than nine express bus services to Kuala Lumpur.  
 
Terengganu Public Land Transport Commission (SPAD) director Nik Aminuddin Nik Shahar Shah said the bus operators started halting their services from last night after the authorities issued an advice that all routes to the capital were flooded.  
 
"More than 20 express buses could not continue their journeys to Kuala Lumpur and Kuantan due to the floods.    
 
"The companies had to refund the ticket prices. The passengers were understanding and didn't complain about it," he said when contacted by Bernama here today. 
 
Nik Aminuddin said that services to the northern region were not affected however and added that the only alternative to KL was by flight. 
 
In KELANTAN,  639 people were evacuated from Kuala Krai and Gua Musang.
 
A spokesman from the district police's flood operations centre said a group of 77 people were moved to the old South Kelantan development authority's (Kesedar) office at Lebir while a group of 24 Orang Asli were sheltering at some empty houses at Kampung Miak in Pasir Linggi.
 
Meanwhile, water at three flood measuring stationswere above the danger level as at 6pm.
 
The water level of the Lebir river at Tualang, Kuala Krai was 35.88m (danger level 35m) and Kelantan river at the Krai Steps 25.43m (25m) and the Guillemard bridge at Tanah Merah 16.65 m (16m).
 
The water level of Golok river at Rantau Panjang was 8.93m, just below the danger level of 9m.
 
Three roads in Kuala Krai have also been closed to light vehicles. They are the Bukit Sireh/Kampung Bedal/Kuala Nal road at Kampung Bukit Sireh, Guchil/Batu balai road at Batu Balai  and Sungai Durian/Chenulang road at Chenulang.  

 

 

 

 

Aerial view of the flood in Kuantan. NSTP/Sairien Nafis

Aerial view of a housing estate in Kuantan, Pahang. NSTP / Yazit Razali

The aerial view over Permatang Badak in Kuantan, Pahang. NSTP/Sairien Nafis

Aerial view of the flood in Gambang, Kuantan in Pahang. NSTP/Hariz Mohd

Aerial view of the flood in Gambang, Kuantan in Pahang. NSTP/Hariz Mohd

 


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