PETALING JAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) has been deployed to rescue 93 tourists stranded on Tioman island for several days following bad weather and rough seas.
A total of 54 foreign tourists and 39 local tourists have been stranded on the island off the east coast of Johor since Jan 11.
Tioman assemblyman Mohd Johari Hussain said Navy ship KD Terengganu is expected to arrive on the island at 10pm on Monday (Jan 15).
"Tomorrow morning (Jan 16) at 7.30am, we can start transferring people from the marina," he told The Star.
Datuk Seri Mohd Johari said seven local people will also be allowed to board the ship as they had urgent matters to attend to on the mainland.
The annual northeast monsoon season means heavy rain and stormy seas for Tioman island from October to March every year.
Mr Mohd Johari said when the monsoon season starts, the government constantly reminds people of the situation and the risk that they may face on the island.
"During this period, fewer tourists will visit the island due to the weather but there are those who take the risk to go to Tioman with the hope that they would be able to board the ferry when the weather improves," he said.
He said this time, ferry services remained inoperable for a longer period and as such, tourists and locals were unable to leave the island.