Second wave begins in Terengganu

KUALA LUMPUR - A second wave of flooding has begun in Terengganu with more people affected by rising water while continuous rain in Pahang is putting the authorities and public on high alert over the next 24 hours.

However, both Kelantan and Johor saw a slight improvement after many flood evacuees were allowed to return home.

The Meteorological Department said that thunderstorms and heavy rain occurring over Pahang and Terengganu are expected to persist.

It added that the same weather conditions were expected to occur over Perak, Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Negeri Sembilan and Johor.

In Terengganu, the number of evacuees rose to 22,706 by evening, a drastic increase from the 6,758 sheltering in relief centres, after Kemaman was inundated again with water.

The National Security Council said the returning rain and high tide contributed to the floods, forcing more people to be evacuated.

"Several villages, which were not flooded at first, are now inundated, including Kampung Geliga, Banggol, Gong Pauh and Kampung Besut," it said.

Communications in Kemaman have been affected with many electrical substations under water, making it difficult for flood victims to call up for help.

Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein said the army was getting ready to deploy its engineers to build a tactical bridge in Sg Limbungan Kemaman after a 5m portion of its river bank collapsed.

In Pahang, the Meteorological Department said an orange level alert had been issued for Kuantan, Pekan, Rompin, Temerloh, Bera and Maran in Pahang, which were expected to see heavy rains continuing until today.

Saturday, the state capital, already reeling from floods that closed roads and shut down businesses, saw continuous rain from morning.

As at 6.15pm, there had been an increase of evacuees in Pahang to 39,580 people sheltering at 116 relief centres, the highest number among the states affected. Bera is the latest district to be flooded.

Third Division Commander Maj Gen Datuk Sheikh Mohsin Sheikh Hassan said 1,200 Armed Forces personnel were already involved in rescue operations while another 1,200 were on standby should a second wave of floods hit Pahang.

Stretches along several main roads - Sungai Lembing-Kuantan road at the 28KM stretch, Kuantan-Segamat road at the 72KM and Temerloh-Bahau road at the 14KM - are still closed to traffic after being inundated with more than a metre of water.

In Kelantan, 619 out of the 2,381 people sheltering in relief centres were allowed home after the weather turned for the better.

Although the water level had subsided somewhat, the level of Sungai Golok in Rantau Panjang remained above the danger level at 10.26m.

In Johor, there was a slight drop in the number of evacuees from 1,633 to 1,538 with clear skies reported here and Kulaijaya.

The areas still affected by floods are Segamat, Batu Pahat and Kota Tinggi.