Information bulletin: Malaysia: Seasonal floods (03 December 2019)


The situation

Heavy rains continue in Malaysia since the seasonal rains began to make its mark in the northern states of the western peninsula from the end of November 2019. Significant heavy rains from 26 November 2019 have caused flooding in four states in Peninsular Malaysia, namely, Johor, Kelantan, Pahang and Terengganu. The floods have temporarily displaced about 15,000 families across the country. The situation following the weekend (30 November 2019) saw water level increasing in several affected districts. The Malaysian National Security Council (NSC), the National Agency for Disaster Administration and the district offices in the respective affected areas are coordinating the evacuation activities with the support of the Malaysian Fire and Rescue Department.

According to MRCS Kelantan branch, the number of evacuees in the state has now increased to 12,087 from 4,177 families as of 10.00am (local time) today. The evacuees are housed at 82 evacuation centres in eight districts specifically in Tumpat, Pasir Mas, Kota Bharu, Tanah Merah, Pasir Puteh, Machang, Bachok and Kuala Krai. In Terengganu roughly 2,970 families were evacuated from seven districted in the last one week and are being housed currently in 124 evacuation centres.

Malaysian Meteorological Department is forecasting more rains in Peninsular Malaysia in the second week of December. The conditions of major rivers in Kelantan and Terengganu are still at critical level which could cause another flooding with more rain. The government authorities, in particular the National Agency for Disaster Administration (NADMA) has taken precautionary efforts to ensure that response teams are ready for the second cycle of flooding in these areas. NADMA, Malaysian Armed Forces, Royal Malaysia Police and other local government agencies have conducted evacuations, established emergency shelters, operationalized evacuation centers and continue to provide relief assistance to affected families. The authorities have deployed the Special Malaysia Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (SMART) in the affected areas to carry out search and rescue operations in highly inundated areas.

Furthermore, the relevant district offices are coordinating all humanitarian activities at district level working closely with NADMA, Malaysian Civil Defence Force, Malaysian Armed Forces and Royal Malaysia Police in these affected areas. In accordance with the Malaysian Policy and Mechanism of National Disaster Management and Relief set out by the National Security Council (known as Directive No. 20), the district offices are responsible in evacuating the flood victims to evacuation centers while other agencies and voluntary bodies, including the MRCS, have roles defined in relief and recovery efforts.