Heavy rain jams up Penang roads

Torrential rain: Two cars are partially covered by floodwaters in a neighbourhood in Bayan Baru, Penang.

Torrential rain: Two cars are partially covered by floodwaters in a neighbourhood in Bayan Baru, Penang.

GEORGE TOWN: A two-hour downpour caused a massive traffic crawl in several areas around Penang island.

Areas such as Jalan Mayang Pasir and Jalan Mahsuri in Bayan Baru; Taman Lip Sin in Sungai Dua; Bayan Lepas, Batu Maung and Permatang Damar Laut were hit by flash floods.

Floodwaters caused at least three cars to stall along Me­­dan Kam­pung Relau in Bayan Lepas.

Water levels started to rise from 10am yesterday.

Perak Road Fire and Rescue Department se­­nior officer Mohd Rizuwan Abu Hassan said that water levels rose to more than 0.6m but subsided quickly.

“We received a report about the stalled cars at about 11am but they had been shifted when we arrived at the scene,” he said.

Yeap Ban Choon, 54, who was attending a seminar at Alora Hotel in Bayan Lepas, said he was shocked to see the road flooded when he was exiting the hotel.

“I wanted to leave as I had an important meeting to attend, but unfortunately I was forced to stay put as the water level was too high.

“I had to wait in the hotel till it subsided at around 11.30am,” said the software company ma­­nager who was irked by the constant flash floods in the state.

Former Pantai Jerejak assemblyman Wong Mun Hoe said that many of his friends forwarded pictures of the flood to him.

“My friends always keep me informed to make sure none of us are stuck in the floods.

“Every time it rains, there seems to be a flood in Penang,” he said.

“It is a worrying matter and I hope the state government can seriously look into it.”

Bayan Baru MP Sim Tze Tzin said the unusual weather was a contributing factor to the flash floods.

“I will be requesting for allocations from the state government for flood mitigation projects in Bayan Baru and Batu Maung,” he said.

Batu Maung assemblyman Datuk Abdul Malik Abul Kassim said many factors contributed to the flash floods in Batu Maung.

“The rainy weather, ongoing flood mitigation projects as well as road widening are some of the reasons for flash floods in Batu Maung.

“The drains have not been completed for the road widening project,” he said.

In Balik Pu­­lau, a waterspout was spotted near Kam­pung Perlis and another at Pu­­lau Betong.

Photographs of the waterspout, usually caused by unstable weather conditions and strong winds, went viral.

A witness claimed he saw two waterspouts at Pulau Betong.

“They happened at Pulau Be­­tong and luckily not near the coast which could have caused major damage to the villages.

“I immediately alerted the residents about the waterspouts,” he said.

Residents in Batu Maung and Permatang Damar Laut were also affected by floods on Wednesday.

On Deepavali day last Saturday, residents in Bandar Baru Air Itam, Taman Lumba Kuda and Jalan P. Ramlee suffered the brunt of torrential rains.