Friday, April 13, 2012

Seven Kampar villages flooded


UNUSUALLY HEAVY RAINFALL: 254 families evacuated

KAMPAR: A TOTAL of 1,145 people from 254 families in seven villages here were evacuated after their houses were hit by floods early yesterday.

They were sheltered at SMK Kampar and Dewan Pulau Bergading. The victims were from Kampung Baru Kuala Dipang, Kampung Kuala Dipang, Kampung Melaya, Kampung Batu 20, Kampung Pisang, Kampung Pasir and Kampung Nyior.

Security personnel and staff from the government departments and agencies assisted in the evacuation.

Water level that rose up to 1m following heavy rains about midnight on Wednesday saw the Sungai Kampar bund bursting and flooding the villages about 5am.

Apart from homes, furniture shops, workshops and hundreds of vehicles and motorcycles were also damaged.

Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abd Kadir inspected the affected areas yesterday. He also visited the families placed at SMK Kampar.

He said the unusually heavy rainfall had caused the floods.

"We cannot link the floods to the earthquake (in Indonesia) that caused tremors in several states yesterday (Wednesday). It was the unusual high volume of water that hit the villages."

An elderly couple of Kampung Baru Kuala Dipang almost drowned when the kitchen and a room of their house were swept away by the floodwaters.

Osman Ibrahim, 88, and his wife, Hazmah Embuk, 84, escaped unhurt.

The 3m bund of Sungai Dipang behind the house had burst, causing the gushing water to hit their house.

The couple's son, Zainal Abidin, 53, of Kampung Nyior, said his parents managed to escape after being alerted by other villagers.

Razali Mohd Ali, 73, who stays with his wife, Azizah Hashim, 63, in the same village, said he was preparing for his morning prayers when water suddenly gushed into the house.

"It was like a tsunami. Everything happened so fast that we only had time to save ourselves."

Policeman Anuar Mohammad, 55, of Kampung Baru Kuala Dipang, said he felt uncomfortable after hearing reports of the earthquake on Wednesday. He rode back to his village about 3am after duty.

Anuar, who is attached to the Kampar police station, said he was shocked to see several areas in the village under water.

"I rode around on my motorcycle and alerted the villagers who were still asleep.

"Within 15 minutes, the water level rose to 1m and trapped the villagers. They had no time to salvage their belongings.

"I then used my motorboat to evacuate several people, the elderly and disabled, with the assistance of several youths."

A villager of Kampung Pasir, Abdul Aziz Hamid, 83, who lives alone said: "I did not expect the water to rise so swiftly. I had no time to salvage anything. The last time the village was flooded was five years ago but this time around, it was serious."

A bridge in Batang Padang was also swept away by the floodwaters.

Meanwhile, a flash flood inundated 403 houses in Sungai Jernih, Sungai Masjid and Sungai Sangkut in Ijok, Selama, yesterday.

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