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Tropical storm heading this way

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FULL ALERT: National Security Council warns all to take precautions as govt agencies prepare for floods

KUALA LUMPUR: THE National Security Council (NSC) is on full alert as a tropical storm, blowing across the South China Sea from the Philippines, is forecast to hit the east coast states of  Kelantan, Terengganu and Pahang between tomorrow and Wednesday.

According to the Malaysian Meteorological Department (MMD), the storm is expected to pose flood risks to low-lying areas in these states.

The weather will also cause strong winds and rough sea conditions which could pose a threat along the coastal areas.

NSC secretary Datuk Mohamed Thajudeen Abdul Wahab called for a meeting yesterday with all agencies involved in disaster management on preparations to tackle the heavy rainfall.

"The armed forces, police, Civil Defence and Welfare Department have mobilised their respective personnel in the event that floods occur and people have to be evacuated," he said.

"Four-wheel drives, rescue boats, helicopters and generators are among the equipment already placed at flood-prone areas, while the Welfare Department has prepared evacuation centres to house potential victims."

The public, especially fishermen, are strongly advised not to carry out any activities at sea or the beach. Those residing in flood-prone areas are urged to be on the alert for warnings issued by the authorities.

"Residents should take precautions and make preparations in the event of floods.

"If asked to evacuate by the authorities, the public should heed the advice and not wait until the last minute as it could jeopardise their safety," Thajudeen added.

"As floodwaters are expected to rise rapidly and currents are strong, please do not wait until the last minute to evacuate.

"We also want parents to be more responsible over the safety of their children and prohibit them from playing in floodwaters."

The MMD on its website warned of strong winds of more than 60 kmph with waves of more than 5.5m occurring over the waters off Kelantan, Terengganu, Samui, Condore, Reef North, Layang-Layang and Palawan from yesterday until tomorrow.

The coastal areas of Kelantan and Terengganu are vulnerable to a rise in sea level.

This condition of strong winds and rough seas is dangerous to all coastal and shipping activities, including workers on oil platforms.

Strong winds of between 50 and 60kmph with waves up to 4.5m are expected over the waters off Pahang, East Johor, Sarawak (Rejang, Mukah, Bintulu and Miri), Labuan, Sabah (Interior, West Coast and Kudat) and Tioman until Friday.

The latest information on weather conditions can be obtained from either http://www.met.gov.my or http://portalbanjir.mkn.gov.my.

According to AlertNet, a Reuters service, the tropical storm is forecast to strike Malaysia on Tuesday.

The forecast was made with data supplied by the United States Navy and Air Force Joint Typhoon Warning Centre.

Teachers of SK Sri Rantau Panjang 1 in Rantau Panjang placing chairs onto tables yesterday. Pic by Fathil Asri


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