Malaysia: Seasonal Floods 2014 - Emergency Plan of Action operation update no 1, n° MDRMY002

A. Situation analysis

Description of the disaster

Heavy seasonal rain and strong wind affected most parts of Malaysia starting in mid-December 2014 and continuing in to the first weeks of January. The rain caused severe flooding in the East Coast of Peninsular Malaysia – the states of Terengganu, Pahang, and Kelantan. Some areas in these states received up to 1000 mm of rain between 11 and 25 December, which is double what is expected in a normal monsoon. In addition to the three most affected states, four other states in Peninsular Malaysia (Perak, Johor, Selangor and Perlis states) and one state in East Malaysia (Sabah) also experienced floods due to the heavy rainfalls. The heavy and prolonged rain also coincided with higher than normal tides, which effectively inhibited flood waters from draining to the sea.

At the peak of the flooding, more than 230,000 people were evacuated and at least 17 people have been confirmed dead. As such, these floods are the worst in decades in Malaysia. As of 20 January, there are still a few thousand displaced and many more staying with host families. There are no estimates of the total number of people affected, but based on the number of displaced it’s plausible that between half a million to a million people have been affected, directly or indirectly.