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Sunday, December 16, 2007

45. Brace for worse floods!

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Dr George Chan yesterday warned the people to expect the worse as the flood situation was forecast to deteriorate on Dec 16.

He also called for extra precaution as heavy rain was expected in Kapit.
“I was made understand that heavy rain occurred in Kapit last night (Thursday), with more than 100 ml of rainfalls, and the water is expected to flow down to Sibu in two days’ time.

“Unfortunately during this period, the King Tide at 3.5-metre water level is expected to occur here, and therefore, the flood level here is predicted to be higher,” he said when visiting the 53 evacuees at Malay Union Club’s Hall in Jalan Bandung noon yesterday.
He was accompanied by Deputy Minister of Housing and Local Government Datuk Robert Lau, Sibu Municipal Council Datuk Tiong Thai King, Nangka assemblyman Awang Bemee Awang Ali Basah, Sibu Resident officer Chai Moi Fong.

Chan cautioned those areas hit by the recent floods, especially the low-lying areas, was expected to be hit again, and he hoped the people would be more careful, and be prepared of higher water level in their surroundings.

The King Tide, between 3.5m and 3.6m, would be expected from Dec 21 - 29, he said, adding that the water level here would usually be between 2.2m and 2.3m. “The water level is a bit higher. We have to prepare for the worst. For example, if the flooding gets bad here, we would seek assistance from other divisions such as Mukah, Bintangor, Sarikei, Bintulu and Miri to help the flood victims here,” he said.

Chan,who is also the chairman of Sarawak Disaster and Relief Action Committee, said the people could contact the direct line of the main operation room here at 084-334852 if they have any inquiry or needed help during the floods.

The people were also reminded to be calm and not to panic during the floods as the local assemblymen and the Members of the Parliament would do their best to assist them, he said.

Chan disclosed that the local council had at least RM24 million to start the flood mitigation project here soon, and noted that the whole project was estimated to cost RM400 million.

He also reminded parents to ensure that their children refrain from playing in the flood water to prevent any undesired incident.
“I also would like to remind the people not to play around the power sub-stations as it could endanger their lives, and also to make sure all electric appliances were kept in a safe place,” he said.

He also urged operators and the boat owners to slow to prevent high waves hitting houses along the Sungai Rajang. “I have asked the Sarawak Rivers Board (SRB) to put a sign along the river to warn the operators to slow down their vessels, especially from Sungai Antu to the town centre,” he said.

borneopost 16/12/07

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