Malaysia: Flash floods strike parts of Penang yet again

PHUAH KEN LIN New Straits Times 1 Nov 16;

GEORGE TOWN: Flash floods inundated a large section of a village here today following continuous overnight rain.

A check at the site showed that knee-deep flood waters had swept past the low-lying village, causing damage to household items.

Residents from some 15 houses at Block K of Kampung Batu Maung were furious when floodwaters gushed into their homes for the third time this year about 7am.

Suhaimi Saidin, 37, was saddened about the recurring flash floods in the village neighborhood and blamed the ongoing highway development as the root cause of the floods.

Showing picture of his house interior inundated by flood waters when met, Suhaimi lamented his misfortune.

"This flood this morning is the worst of its kind.

"My house is filled with filth and mud and the furniture and bedding has been submerged in murky water," he said.

Another resident, Zahara Arshad, 61, said the she was jolted from her sleep when the flood waters swept into her house.

"I had a shock when the water gushed into my house.

"The ongoing highway project and a landed property project off the village have caused the earth drainage to overflow due to the excessive quantity of the rainwater irrigation system" she said.

The cleanup process is in full swing. Civil Defence Department members chipped in to help the villages scrape off the mud stuck at the open compound.

Batu Maung assemblyman Datuk Abdul Malik Abul Kassim was at the scene to inspect the damages to the property.

The water level receded about 9am.


Flash floods wreak havoc in Penang
The Star 2 Nov 16;

GEORGE TOWN: Heavy rains brought by the northeast monsoon continue to lash Penang, which was hit by floods on Deepavali day.

After residents in Bandar Baru Air Itam, Taman Lumba Kuda and Jalan P. Ramlee bore the brunt of the torrential rain on Saturday, it was the turn of those living in Batu Maung and Permatang Damar Laut.

Continuous rain from 3am yesterday caused the water level to rise to a metre in Batu Maung, affecting more than 30 houses.

Penang Civil Defence Department operations officer Muhammad Aizat Abdul Ghani said 10 personnel rushed to the scene to help.

“However, water had receded by then and there was no immediate danger to the residents,” he added.

Muhammad Aizat said Pe­­nang Island City Council workers helped to clear the debris in flood-hit houses.

Public Works Department director Salleh Awang said the water from the hills had overflowed from the retention pond of a housing project and discharged into the drains along the road.

“The water was supposed to be retained in the pond. The drains along Jalan Batu Maung have not been completed because of the project,” he said yesterday.

Salleh added that the road upgrading project was scheduled to be completed by end of next year.

A Penang Meteorological Depart­ment spokesman said rain over the past few days was the result of the northeast monsoon.

“The rain on Saturday was evident as the winds were blowing in the north and bringing rain in the evening,” the spokesman said.

Meanwhile, the Kek Lok Si Tem­ple has refuted news that the temple was closed to the public.

Temple trustee Datuk Steven Ooi said the temple was open as usual.


Floods worsen despite RM94mil for flood mitigation
The Star 1 Nov 16;

GEORGE TOWN: Over-exploitation of hill slopes and ‘excessively pro-business policies’ are the main reasons for the floods that have been plaguing the state, said Penang MCA deputy chief Tan Teik Cheng.

He singled out approved development projects around Paya Terubong, Ayer Itam and Sungai Pinang that were putting a strain on the state’s drainage system.

“This time, in addition to floods, landslides also occurred near Air Itam. The culprit is obviously hillside development.”

He said in a statement yesterday that despite a reported RM94,378,364 spent on flood mitigation in the state, the flooding appeared to have become more serious.

“The Penang government spent so much money on flood mitigation even in Teluk Bahang, Bayan Baru, Penang International Airport, Butterworth and Bukit Mertajam but why haven’t we seen the effectiveness of these projects?” he asked.

At a press conference, state Local Government Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow denied that the flooding of Sungai Dondang and Sungai Air Itam was due to over development.

He asked people to name any hillside project in these areas.

“In the Sungai Dondang and Sungai Air Itam catchment upstream, there are no development projects.

“Even if there are, they are not at hillsides,” he said yesterday in Komtar.


Floods hit Batu Maung, Permatang Damar Laut in Penang
R. SEKARAN The Star 1 Nov 16;

GEORGE TOWN: Flash floods hit Batu Maung and Permatang Damar Laut here after a heavy downpour since 2am on Tuesday.

At least 50 houses were flooded putting Civil Defence Department (JPAM) personnel on standby for any evacuation.

In Batu Maung, at least 20 houses were flooded with water reaching a metre high since 3am.

Penang JPAM operations officer Second Lieutenant Muhammad Aizat Abdul Ghani said 10 personnel were sent to the affected areas.

"We are monitoring the situation and are ready for any evacuation if needed," said Muhammad Aizat.

It is believed that the floods were due to clogged drains from upgrading works at a residential project along the Bayan Lepas-Batu Maung area.

Works on clearing the hill for the project had been going on for some time.

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