JOHOR BARU • A heavy two-hour downpour resulted in massive flash floods in parts of Johor Baru yesterday, trapping some motorists and forcing police to close off some roads, media reports said.
Dozens of cars were submerged following the downpour, which started at 11am, with Jalan Wong Ah Fook and Jalan Sultan Ibrahim along Danga Bay the worst-hit, The Star reported. Many basement carparks in the city centre were also flooded due to the heavy downpour, the report said.
Traffic was at a standstill at all major roads leading into the city.
The Rakyat Post said three motorists were trapped in their cars after their vehicles were stuck in a flash flood along the busy Jalan Wong Ah Fook, where the popular City Square Johor Baru shopping complex and the Komtar JBCC mall are located.
A Johor fire-and-rescue department spokesman was quoted as saying that they dispatched a team from the Johor Baru fire station after receiving a distress call at 12.48pm.
"The team arrived at the scene at 1pm and immediately gave assistance," said the spokesman, adding that there were no casualties.
The three cars were among 20 stranded along the stretch after it was flooded for about two hours following continuous heavy downpour at noon, said the Rakyat Post.
Johor Baru Selatan police chief Assistant Commissioner Sulaiman Salleh said water levels rose to as high as 1.5m, causing the stretch to be impassable to vehicles.
"Police were called in and we immediately closed the road and diverted traffic flow as the water level rose," he told the Rakyat Post.
AC Sulaiman said there were no casualties or injuries reported, and police had normalised traffic flow when the water level started receding at 2.15pm as the rain stopped.
He advised motorists to avoid the affected parts of the city centre and use alternate routes.
Several areas in the Klang Valley were also hit by flash floods yesterday, causing many vehicles to be trapped on the main roads.
The floods almost derailed the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (Malaysian Certificate of Education) examinations (equivalent to the O levels) for Form 5 students at two schools in Bandar Puncak Alam, as the papers arrived late due to poor traffic conditions, The New Straits Times reported yesterday.
Assessment and Examination Sector chief Abdul Talib Hamid said the exam was supposed to have started at 10am and end at 12.30pm but, due to the floods, started later than scheduled.
"To ensure that all candidates are present at the appointed time, the Selangor Education Department will ask for assistance from the fire- and-rescue department, as well as the Civil Defence Department, for lorries to transport the candidates if the waters do not recede by tomorrow," Mr Abdul Talib said.
"Teachers affected by the floods have also been asked to look for nearby accommodation to ensure that they reach their respective schools easily," he said.