Downpour leaves up north inundated by flash floods

The Star, 14 Oct 2013

BALIK PULAU: Heavy rain that lasted several hours left low-lying areas in Bayan Lepas and Balik Pulau inundated by flash floods.

Among the worst hit areas were Kampung Pulau Betong and Kampung Nelayan Teluk Kumbar where villagers were seen salvaging their belongings and moving to higher ground as the water level rose up to 1.5m.

Several roads in Pulau Betong, Simpang Empat and Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah were also flooded with water levels rising to as high as 0.5m during the downpour which started at about 4am yesterday.

It was a bumper-to-bumper crawl along several roads as motorists were having problem passing through the submerged roads.

Nasi lemak seller Norita Ismail said water started to gush into her shop in Kampung Nelayan at about 7.45am.

“Within minutes, it rose to ankle-deep level.

“I did not have time to save my raw ingredients, refrigerator and table,” she said.

Balik Pulau OCPD Supt Mohd Hatta Mohd Zain said 70 people, including 30 children from Balik Pulau and Teluk Kumbar, had to be relocated to the Pulau Betong and Teluk Kumbar mosques.

“Policemen and firemen were deployed to the affected areas to assess the situation and maintain public order.

No casualty was reported, except a woman who was admitted to the Balik Pulau Hospital after she was bitten by a snake,” he said.

Penang Local Government, Traffic Manage­ment and Flood Mitigation Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow said floods were only reported in the south-west district.

“We have assigned special squads to clear rubbish and debris at pump houses, monsoon drains and retention ponds,” he said.

Meanwhile, Malaysia Airports Bhd’s Penang airport senior manager Mohd Ariff Jaafar said two flights were diverted to Langkawi while another flight was delayed due to the bad weather.