Malaysia

East coast floods claim one more life

December 26, 2012

An elderly woman carries her grandchild as they are rescued from their flooded village in Tumpat 500km northeast of Kuala Lumpur December 26, 2012. — Reuters picAn elderly woman carries her grandchild as they are rescued from their flooded village in Tumpat 500km northeast of Kuala Lumpur December 26, 2012. — Reuters picKUALA LUMPUR, Dec 26 — The floods in the east cost have claimed one more life, bringing the death toll to two thus far.

In the latest incident, a 15-year-old boy drowned after he fell off a sampan near his home in Bukit Mentok, Kemaman at 2pm today.

Kemaman police chief Che Suza Che Hitam said apparently the boat got stuck in some undergrowth and when the boy tried to free it, he slipped and fell overboard and was swept away by strong currents.

He said a friend of the boy who was also on the boat had also gone missing and was feared to have drowned as well.

“The family only realised he was missing after he did not return home after about two hours. Finding the sampan empty, they mounted a search and found his body floating in the floodwaters a short distance away at around 4.30pm,” he told Bernama.

The latest round of floods in the east coast claimed the first casualty yesterday when a woman drowned after she slipped and fell into the Lanjut river near the Permaisuri Bridge in Kwhile casting a net with her husband.

The flood situation in the east coast states of Pahang, Terengganu and Kelantan is not showing any signs of abating with more people evacuated to relief centres this afternoon as compared to the morning.

The number of evacuees in the three states is reported to have risen to 17,443 people as compared 13,746 in the morning.

Terengganu is the worst hit with the number rising to 10,412 people in the afternoon as compared to 6,550 in the morning. 

According to the state government’s flood portal, as of 6pm, Besut had the most number of evacuees at 2,666 people followed by Kemaman (2,272), Dungun (1,983), Hulu Terengganu (1,390), Besut (1,088), Kuala Terengganu (807) and Marang (206). 

They are being sheltered in 30 relief centres in Setiu, Kemaman (23), Dungun (29), Hulu Terengganu (16), Besut (10), Kuala Terengganu and Marang (seven each).

He said Kuantan still had the most number of evacuees at 2,231 people who are sheltered in 11 relief centres and that 620 victims had been allowed to return to their homes.

“In Pekan, the situation is unchanged with 206 people still sheltered at Sekolah Kebangsaan Sinar Mutiara, Sungai Miang while the relief centres in Rompin and Jerantut have been closed and the victims returning to their homes since lunchtime today,” he said.

He added that Jalan Sungai Lembing-Kuantan still remained closed to traffic at KM16, KM28, KM30 as well as the Sungai Charu Bride to Sungai Lembing and KM18 Jalan Kuantan By-Pass, Gebeng. — Bernama