Nearly 9,000 evacuated from Pahang floods

A resident of Kampung Gudang Rasau in Kuantan, Mr Mohamad Sukri, helping his wife Ita Daud get to dry land using stacked plastic chairs as a bridge after the nearby Sungai Belat overflowed its banks. More than 7,000 people have been evacuated from th
A resident of Kampung Gudang Rasau in Kuantan, Mr Mohamad Sukri, helping his wife Ita Daud get to dry land using stacked plastic chairs as a bridge after the nearby Sungai Belat overflowed its banks. More than 7,000 people have been evacuated from their homes in Kuantan.PHOTO: BERNAMA

KUANTAN • The number of flood victims in the Malaysian state of Pahang who have been evacuated from their homes as a result of heavy rains climbed to nearly 9,000 yesterday, Malaysian media reported.

As of 2pm yesterday, 8,800 people had been evacuated to 50 flood relief centres, up from 7,309 in the morning, the Bernama news agency reported, citing the flood portal of the Social Welfare Department.

The district of Lipis became the latest to be struck by floods, which have also affected Kuantan, Maran, Jerantut, Rompin and Pekan. Most of the evacuees, however, came from Kuantan, with 7,162 evacuees being housed in 28 temporary relief centres.

Two people have also died in the floods - a 17-year-old who was walking back to his home around midnight when he had an epileptic seizure and fell into knee-deep floodwaters, and a seven-year-old who drowned while playing near a monsoon drain on Wednesday, the New Straits Times reported.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, who hails from Pekan, said on Wednesday that he would ensure adequate aid was given to the victims.

At least 21 schools in Pahang remained closed yesterday, since the new school year began on Tuesday.

The monsoon rains also caused flooding in other parts of the country, including Johor, Terengganu, Kelantan, Sabah and Sarawak, forcing hundreds to evacuate and more than a dozen schools to be closed.

Terengganu saw a slight increase in evacuees yesterday, with 1,036 people seeking refuge in 13 relief centres, up from 1,003 people in the morning, the New Straits Times reported. Six primary schools there were shut yesterday.

The flood situation improved in Kelantan, although there was still a risk of flooding as four rivers in the state remained above their warning levels as of yesterday morning. Five schools reopened yesterday, while only one remained closed.

Over in Johor, the number of evacuees was little changed, with 387 seeking refuge at relief centres - one down from 388 in the morning. Two schools remained closed.

In Sabah, the number of evacuees rose to 555 from 489 yesterday morning. Fourteen schools remained closed due to the floods.

In Sarawak, three schools remained shut yesterday.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 05, 2018, with the headline 'Nearly 9,000 evacuated from Pahang floods'. Print Edition | Subscribe