Archive for category NaturaL disaster

What has Umno/BN government learned from natural disasters?

– Nawawi Mohamad
The Malaysian Insider
29 December 2014

Malaysia has experienced several natural disasters which resulted in loss of lives and properties starting back in December 1993 with the collapse of two blocks of the Highland Towers, then the tsunami in 2004, recent Cameron Highlands landslides and the latest being the unprecedented floods in Kelantan, Pahang and Terengganu.

By the way, with so frequent flooding, we ought to be professional in facing them by now. Unfortunately, we are never ready and never prepared.

In the Highland Towers tragedy, we lacked experience such that the Japanese Civil Defence sent a team to help in the search and rescue effort. Search and rescue teams from Singapore, France, United Kingdom and the United States also came to help. Read the rest of this entry »

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Declare state of emergency now

– Dr. Tan Eng Bee
The Malaysian Insider
30 December 2014

I agree with the expert opinion that the powers-that-be should have declared a state of emergency for the affected states in the worst floods in history. This flood is unlike previous floods as the damage and destruction affected about a third of the peninsula’s land mass or more in my estimation, and that is cause for concern.

The devastation is so disastrous and serious by all counts. Unless an emergency is declared as soon as possible to allow government agencies and NGOs to work towards bringing reliefs to the people who are already suffering from the wet condition and in dire need of food and water, I am afraid the misery and anguish of the affected masses would intensified and surpassed all previous floods.

Despite the authorities telling the masses not to believe everything in social media, the fact remains the poor coordination of the various agencies bringing humanitarian aid, such as food and water and other supplies, has not reached many affected areas and the cries for help are still being heard far and wide across the nation.

Whether we want to believe it or not, we have reached a critical and dangerous stage where the welfare of the affected people is threatened and every form of humanitarian aid and resources must now be geared towards bringing food and water and other form of relief to relief centres without delay.

If we cannot reach them by road, then we have no alternative but to reach them by air.
Read the rest of this entry »

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Flood evacuees eager to return home

Dec 30, 2014

FLOODS The bright, sunny weather and receding flood waters have allowed many evacuees to return to their respective homes after spending six days at the evacuation centre.

A Bernama survey at Sekolah Kebangsaan Pulai Serai in Dungun, Terengganu, found more than 500 victims housed there already packing and preparing to return home.

However, the water level at the homes of flood victims in Kampung Alor Mak Bah had still not subsided.

The victims told Bernama that due to the rapidly rising water, they failed to save any belongings because the flood this time was beyond their expectation. Read the rest of this entry »

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Flood mitigation in Kelantan

– Koon Yew Yin
The Malaysian Insider
30 December 2014

Like all Malaysians, much of my attention during the past week has centered on the news and scenes of the flood devastation that has occurred in the country, especially in Kelantan.

While I also share the concern of many others as to whether our political leaders and authorities have been on top of their game or have bungled in their disorganized efforts at providing relief, the mainfocus of my scrutiny has been on whether any practical mitigation measure can be undertaken to minimize the impact of this almost annual climatic phenomenon which has caused so much sufferingand socio-economic loss.

In looking for an answer, I believe I am better qualified than most people in the country in view of my long experience as an engineer who has been involved in various major water-related projects such as the Muda Irrigation scheme since the 1960’s. Read the rest of this entry »

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Two extra reasons for a RCI into Floods Disaster Management Preparedness and why this should be top agenda of a Cabinet special meeting on floods disaster

The latest developments in the floods disaster have given two extra reasons why there should be a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Floods Disaster Management Preparedness and why this should be the top agenda of a special Cabinet meeting on the floods disaster.

First, the Malay Mail report that the medical evacuation (medevac) mission for two mothers with severe labour complications was delayed on Sunday for almost two hours at the Badang health clinic by VVIP visits to flood-hit areas.

Dr. Afiq Rahim, stationed at Badang health clinic, recounted this in his facebook,, which has become one of the most closely-followed social media on the trials and tribulations of the dedicated medical personnel and public servants serving their duty under great odds in the current floods disaster.

Dr. Afiq should be an exemplary model for all Malaysians, right up to the Cabinet level, of how Malaysians should conduct themselves in the face of a colossal disaster – prioritizing the saving of the lives of others than to save oneself!

The first patient of a mother with difficult labour pains at the Badang health clinic came in on Sunday at 3.30am. At about 6am, doctors decided she required tertiary healthcare attention and medical evacuation.

But the helicopter which was summoned only arrived at 8am two hours later as the helicopter had to be put “on hold” as a VVIP wanted to visit the flood-hit areas. Read the rest of this entry »


Villagers stranded on hills as floods swept away homes

by Anisah Shukry
The Malaysian Insider
30 December 2014

In the remote village of Kampung Manek Urai Lama, Kuala Krai, in the east coast state of Kelantan, hundreds of villagers had been stranded for days up on the hills, having fled for higher ground when flood waters surged into their homes without warning.

The evacuation had been frightening and sudden, with no help from the authorities, according to Hayati (not her real name), who is among those seeking shelter on the hill after the flood devastated her house.

“The time when we needed them the most, the police, the firemen failed us,” she said, her eyes brimming with unshed tears.

No one in the village expected the flood to reach their homes. So when the water came rushing in at 3am last Tuesday, families scrambled to get to safety as frantic phone calls were made to the authorities to save them.

But the rescue team wouldn’t, or couldn’t, come, and the villagers had only themselves to rely on.

“The water was coming in so fast. When the police said they couldn’t come here, I thought, ‘that’s it, we’ll just have to climb onto the roof.

“But, thank God, someone in the village had a sampan so I quickly climbed in and squeezed into it with my two-month-old baby and we fled for the homes higher up on the hills,” she said. Read the rest of this entry »

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Flood victims live off rainwater-soaked noodles

By Nazri Abdullah
Dec 29, 2014

Deprived of proper food, victims stranded in the country’s worst flood in decades have resorted to desperate measures to fill their growling stomachs.

Even those politically connected are not spared from the national disaster, which has displaced more than 225,000 people, as Annual Bakri Harun can testify.

Annual, a former political secretary to ex-Kelantan menteri besar Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, said he was forced to soak instant noodles in rain water for food.

“I have lived in the dark for the last five days and have only been eating biscuits.

“There are instant noodles, but no electricity to boil water and the stove is not working.

“Out of hunger, I was forced to collect rain water with my bare hands and pour them into the instant noodle cup. Read the rest of this entry »

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Call for RCI into Floods Disaster Management Preparedness as Federal government completely overwhelmed by scale and scope of current floods disaster with number of flood victims increasing by over 1,000% to a quarter of a million people in less than ten days

DAP calls for a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the country’s Floods Disaster Management Preparedness as it is very clear that the Federal government had been completely overwhelmed by the scale and scope of the current floods disaster, with the number of flood victims increasing by over 1,000 per cent to almost a quarter of a million people in less than ten days.

Evidence of the Federal Government being overwhelmed by the magnitude of the scale and scope of the current floods disaster is aplenty, as illustrated by the following instances:

1. Admission by the Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin that the floods disaster was “worse than anticipated”’;

2. Admission by Muhyiddin that the flood mitigation standard operating procedure (SOP) must be reviewed in order to be better prepared in the future;

3. Muhyiddin’s proposal that Malaysia should learn more about disaster management system of other countries, especially Japan and South Korea, as they were known to have the best disaster management system in the world – a belated and very expensive discovery by a coalition which had been in power for 57 years! Read the rest of this entry »

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In Kuala Krai floods, humanity at its best and worst

by Pathma Subramaniam
The Malay Mail Online
December 29, 2014

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 29 ― For the past 20 years at least, residents in hilly Kuala Krai have led a carefree life whenever the annual northeast monsoon blew into Kelantan and turned large areas of the state the colour of the frothy, milky beverage beloved of Malaysians called teh tarik.

Local lore has it that “if it floods in Kuala Krai, the whole of Kelantan will be underwater”, Ryonn Leong, a native, told Malay Mail Online.

But the speed and fierceness that saw the waters of Sungai Kelantan burst its banks last week caught its long-time residents off-guard; there had never been a need for a flood safety plan as the water levels in the river had not risen past the danger mark in 20 years.

“I would scoff it off when any of our friends asked about the flooding in my hometown… who would have thought, one day it would become a reality?” the 34-year-old business development manager said.

While Ryonn now lives in Kuala Lumpur, the torrential rains that lashed Kelantan has been a “nightmare” as his family ― his elderly parents, his siblings and their young children ― were marooned in Kuala Krai by the floodwaters of near biblical proportions. Read the rest of this entry »


Do ministers need to be ordered to handle the floods?

28 December 2014

How times have changed?

In 1969, Tun Abdul Razak Hussein was diagnosed with cancer and told that he had four years to live. Around the same time, Tun Dr Ismail Abdul Rahman’s neck cancer flared up again and his heart condition worsened.

Hardly anyone knew that Malaysia’s top two leaders were on a death watch. The doctors were sworn to secrecy and they went about governing the country, implementing policies and scouting successors.

It would have been so easy and understandable if both acted in their self-interest and stood down from the 24/7 job of looking after Malaysia.

Malaysians would have understood if they had opted for a less stressful life and put their young families ahead of everyone else.

But they didn’t. Read the rest of this entry »

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Transport woes hamper aid, supplies to nearly 200,000 flood victims

The Malaysian Insider
29 December 2014

The good news: Flood waters are receding and it was not raining in Kelantan yesterday although the number of evacuees there have risen to 134,139 last night.

The bad news: Many villagers are stranded without supplies, electricity or cash to buy basics such as candles or canned food as roads remain cut off to all land transport in most parts of the state.

“It’s chaos here,” one aid worker told The Malaysian Insider as he waited to get boats to distribute drinking water, biscuits and canned food in state capital Kota Baru yesterday.

He noted that some evacuation centres there were also flooded and unable to provide food for the flood victims while others came back empty handed from evacuation centres that had run out of supplies. “No co-ordination whatsoever. No proper governance of this disaster.

“One thing I can say from ground zero, our authorities are not prepared for a national disaster. Will we ever will?” the aid worker said. Read the rest of this entry »

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Flood victims top 200,000, K’tan worst hit

From Tweets on Kelantan Floods – 28.12.2014

1. Everything seems to be running out in Kota Bahru. Latest is helicopter fuel – resulting in several helicopters stranded at KB Heli hangar.

2. Helped in flood victim relief in Kota Bahru town. Visited Jln Gajah Mati and Jln Kubor Kuda area near riverfront. Shocking water chest-high.

3. Families in heart of town completely stranded become quite inaccessible, with speed of water current making roads quite treacherous rivers.

4. Wading through road-turned-river with treacherous currents unforgettable experience. Area visited full of shops restaurants hotels all shuttered.

5. Firefly could not fly all 101 cartons of supplies DAP Penang prepared for Kota Bahru – only transport 15 trolleys of 94 cartons of necessities. 16 cartons to go tonight. Read the rest of this entry »

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Flood evacuees now number over 160,000

– The Malaysian Insider/Bernama
27 December 2014

The floods took a turn for the worse in Kelantan by this afternoon, sending 81,925 people in all to relief centres, while the situation in Kedah continues to improve.

In Kelantan, 26,000 evacuees were recorded in Tumpat, making it the worst affected of the districts, followed by Kota Baru, with 24,034 evacuees.

Pasir Mas district also had a large number of evacuees, at 12,332. Kuala Krai had 5,200 evacuees; Gua Musang, 5,150; Machang, 4,039; Tanah Merah, 3,548; Jeli, 1,430 and Pasir Puteh, 192.

Kelantan Welfare Department director Nik Omar Nik Abdul Rahman said all the evacuees, from 20,177 families, were being housed at 254 relief centres throughout the state. Read the rest of this entry »


Hulu Dungun folk left with just clothes on their back

By Malaysiakini/Bernama
Dec 27, 2014

About 3,000 flood victims from 20 villages in Hulu Dungun who are left with only their clothes on their backs desperately need help in terms of food and clothing as nearly 80 percent of the houses have been submerged in water.

Kampung Shukor development and security committee (JKKK) chairperson Jailina Abdullah said almost all her village folk were left with the clothes on their backs after the devastating flood struck their village last week.

“The flood this time is very bad. In some parts of the village, only the roofs of houses could be seen… we could not save any of our personal belongings as the water rose too quickly.

“Clothes, baby napkins, sanitary pads, and other necessities are desperately needed by the villagers, and we are forced to wear the same clothes every day … we don’t know whom to ask for help from as almost everyone in the village is facing the same plight,” she told Bernama today.

Jailina said it was difficult to send aid to her village as the main road leading to it collapsed last week due to sinking soil. Read the rest of this entry »

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Show compassion, not self-righteousness

– Syerleena Abdul Rashid
The Malaysian Insider
27 December 2014

The recent flash floods in Malaysia have badly affected four states – Kelantan, Terengganu, Pahang and Perak. Other states such as Negri Sembilan, Perlis, Kedah and Johor have also reported flooding in various areas.

The number of evacuees now stands at more than 130,000 (as of December 27) and is expected to rise in the next few days.

Many describe this year’s flood disaster as the worst in Malaysian history with several elected leaders pressuring the government to declare a state of emergency. The general well-being of the Malaysian public is under threat and government intervention is needed to minimise or prevent such calamity from escalating further. Read the rest of this entry »


Rescuers struggle to reach flood victims as anger mounts

The Malaysian Insider
27 December 2014

Rescue teams struggled to reach inundated areas of northeast Malaysia as victims accused the government of being slow to provide assistance after the country’s worst flooding in decades.

Malaysians have vented their anger at Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak after the release of photos which went viral on social media showing him playing golf with US President Barack Obama during the storms.

The number of people forced to flee their homes climbed past 120,000 with weather forecasters warning of no respite for the northeastern states of Kelantan, Terengganu and Pahang. Read the rest of this entry »

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Kelantan flood victims plead for aid, via social media

by Eileen Ng
The Malaysian Insider
27 December 2014

Desperate victims of the Kelantan flood and their families have turned to social media for help, pleading for food and water supplies in areas cut off by rising waters.

They have inundated the Info Banjir Kelantan community Facebook page since Thursday, and also via Twitter and Instagram social networks with pleas for help from the authorities to help evacuate those affected.

“THIS IS A PLEA – PLEASE REPOST/SHARE The people of Guchil, Kuala Krai, Kelantan are experiencing Food/Water/Power Outage,” Abby Latif posted on her Instagram account this morning.

She went on to relate that the local mosque, Masjid Guchil at Guchil 4 was not a registered relief centre and have not received any medical or food supplies despite housing some 200 families seeking refuge from the floods. Read the rest of this entry »


Call for full public support to the Prime Minister-led national response to the country-wide flood disaster with flood victims already exceeding 120,000 in seven states

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak will arrive in Kelantan today to lead the national flood response after cutting short his vacation in Hawaii.

I call for full public support to the Prime Minister-led national response to the country-wide disaster with flood victims already exceeding 120,000 and at least eight deaths in seven states of Kelantan, Terengganu, Pahang, Perak, Johore, Perlis and Kedah.

The response to the worst flood disaster in the nation’s history cannot be the government’s responsibility alone, but must involve the effort of all Malaysians, but it must by spearheaded by the Federal Government and in view of the magnitude of the disaster, by none other than the Prime Minister himself so as to mobilise every available ounce of resources to render help to those in need in the quickest possible time.

The Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim was right when he said in Kelantan yesterday that there are adequate food supplies as well as assets to send them to flood victims, but the challenge is still how to send the essentials to those who had been stranded – like the heart-rending account of the approximately 100 victims taking shelter at a school in Kuala Krai who had been living without food, clean water, electricity or any aid for over 40 hours or those staying in outlying and inaccessible areas.

International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapha Mohamad had recounted his ordeal on Thursday night experiencing first hand what it was like to grapple in the dark in waist-high floodwaters in search of safe ground, while knowing that a misstep can mean the end, and how a 10km journey from Keroh to the District Officer’s office in Kuala Krai took him and a rescue party four hours, arriving in pitch-dark as all powers had been cut off.

As admitted by the Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muyhiddin Yassin in Pengkalan Chepa yesterday, although the government had expected one of the worst floods this year, the severity and scale of the floods had taken the authorities completely by surprise as it was “worse than anticipated”, overwhelming all disaster management plans and preparations. Read the rest of this entry »

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In Kelantan, desperate flood victims loot homes for food and fresh water

by Melissa Chi
Malay Mail Online
December 27, 2014

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 27 ― Grim conditions facing flood victims in Kelantan are driving a man here to consider renting a helicopter to fly aid to his family trapped by the deluge in the state.

Fearful of the dangers brought by the inundation that has already claimed seven lives and forced over 100,000 people from their homes, Ryonn Leong is mulling the drastic measure to reach his sister, elderly parents, younger brother and his pregnant wife, and their two-year-old daughter marooned in Kuala Krai.

The menace is also not purely elemental; desperation born of hunger and thirst has prompted some flood victims to begin looting homes for food and drink, risking unintended confrontations with owners yet to evacuate their property.

“Just few minutes ago, there are cases where people are breaking into houses to steal food and valuables too. This are caused mainly by food scarcity,” he told Malay Mail Online via text yesterday.

“(The) situation is getting tense as there are areas which people starting to fight for food and loot houses that are empty.”

In wicked irony, one item that is painfully scarce for victims surrounded by the floods is clean water for drinking. According to Leong, one mother in the Kelantan town was now forced to use rainwater to mix the infant formula for her six-month-old. Read the rest of this entry »

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