RESIDENTS of Kota Kuala Muda, Kedah, want immediate action to stop the repeated flash floods plaguing them.
Their homes were flooded more than once and many experienced the hassle of being ordered to evacuate for the first time.
Kampung Telok Nipah resident Md Nazri Yahya, 49, said his village was hit by flash floods twice this month and it not only caused damage to their homes but also affected their daily lives.
“The second time was the worst. We hope the authorities will take immediate action, especially to upgrade the drainage system,” he told Bernama at the flood relief centre at SK Bukit Kechil yesterday.
Rohana Hashim of Kampung Keda Bukit Tukang Jusoh said the heavy rain since Wednesday caused her house to be inundated with knee-deep water.
“We had to move all our electrical appliances to higher ground outside the house.
“My husband, our two children and I have been at the flood relief centre since Thursday,” the 55-year-old woman lamented.
Her friend Asiah Ismail, 40, said it was her first experience of being evacuated with her family due to a flood since moving into the village 12 years ago.
“About 45 out of 75 houses were flooded and we were evacuated.
“Today, the water seemed to have receded and many of us are returning home to clean up,” she said.
The water at Kampung Telok Amboi, Kampung Keda Bukit Tukang Jusoh, Kampung Pulau Sayak and Kampung Pantai Merdeka started receding by yesterday afternoon.
A total of 149 families comprising 669 family members in the state were evacuated to five relief centres in Kuala Muda, Kota Setar and Kubang Pasu districts.
In PERLIS, 365 families comprising 1,200 people had been evacuated to 16 flood relief centres.
In PENANG, state Public Works Department (JKR) director Ahmad Redza Ghulam Rasool said landslides were found in 41 locations in the state since Sept 15 but they were not serious and did not affect buildings.
“We will continuously inspect all hillsides for signs of slope failure such as leaning trees, dysfunctional drainage and cracks,” he told reporters during a visit by Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng to the landslide at Kayangan Puri Mutiara Apartment, Medan Fettes, yesterday.
Ahmad Redza said clearing work would be carried out immediately where landslides occurred and if they obstructed traffic flow, the work could take about two hours.
According to JKR’s standard operating procedure for landslides, he said, priority should be given to ensuring the safety of road users and residents.
“After that, we will clear the slope and ensure good drainage so that rain water will not flow down.
“Then, we cover the slope with plastic sheets before taking steps to stop further erosion,” he said.
Ahmad Redza advised residents staying near slopes to be on the alert and inform the department or Penang Island City Council should they see signs of slope failure.
Meanwhile, Lim also carried out site inspection at several landslide areas following the extraordinary heavy rains due to the tailwind of Typhoon Doksuri on Sept 15.
At Kayangan Puri Mutiara Apartment in Medan Fettes, he said works to repair the anchored sheet piles could only be carried out when the rains stop.
He said the state, through Penang Island City Council, would bear the cost of repair works amounting to RM700,000 to ensure the people’s safety.
He said they would place plastic sheets and sandbags to avoid further landslide in the area.
On Sept 15, six cars belonging to residents parked beside a retaining wall were buried under tonnes of mud and water.
The apartment’s management committee chairman Tan Jin Tat said nine other cars parked nearby were partially damaged.
Lim, in his visit to the Solok Tembaga landslide area in Island Park, said remedial works were expected to be completed by February next year.
He said 80% of the restoration cost, which would include strengthening the slope, would be borne by the MBPP and the remaining by the residents.
“Hopefully, the repair work will be completed by Chinese New Year.
“Safety is of utmost importance so that residents here can have a good night sleep,” said Lim, who was accompanied by Bukit Gelugor MP Ramkarpal Singh.
At Setia Garden in Cangkat Sungai Ara, the landslide area has been covered with a temporary protection, with water flow being diverted to a temporary earth drain to the sedimentation pond.
Technical project manager Khoo Kian Haur said the costs of repair and fixing the slope would be borne by SP Setia Berhad.
It was earlier reported that the landslide on Sept 15 saw water gushing over the soil nailing.
Khoo said the area was not flooded as the rain water went into the internal drains.
“There was just mud and debris and no houses and vehicles were damaged. We are waiting for our consultants to find a method to stabilise the slope.
“The technical consultants have visited the site. They are conducting their analysis,” he said in the presence of Lim yesterday.