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Monsoon floods expected to worsen this year

Bernama

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The northeast monsoon is expected to bring more severe floods this year, said Malaysian Meteorological Department (MetMalaysia) director-general Jailan Simon.

He said the monsoon rain is expected to increase by 20 to 40 percent.

"There were no floods in Kelantan last year, but this year floods may occur," he told reporters after a briefing on the Northeast Monsoon Operations Control Centre at the National Disaster Command Centre in Pulau Meranti near Cyberjaya today.

However, he said exceptional floods are not expected this year, as what had occurred in Kelantan in 2014, where over 100.000 people were displaced.

He said the northeast monsoon is expected to end in March with the rainy season in the Peninsula ending in January, after which, Sabah and Sarawak would be experiencing rain.

"After March, the second phase of the northeast monsoon will set in, bringing in dry and hot weather," he said.

Meanwhile, National Disaster Management Agency (Nadma) deputy director-general (Operations) Zakaria Shaaban said 14 agencies involved in flood coordination works attended a briefing today.

Among them were the Malaysian Fire and Rescue Department, the Malaysian Defence Force, the Royal Malaysian Police, the Malaysian Armed Forces, the Department of Social Welfare and the Department of Survey and Mapping.

"From today, Nadma has activated the central flood control centre as a precautionary measure in preparation for the northeast monsoon and the floods," he said.

As at 4pm today, nine relief centres were still open in three states providing shelter to 1,542 victims.

Zakaria added that the flood control centre would be coordinating relief assistance on the ground nationwide.

Meanwhile, National Disaster Control Centre director Zuraini Mohd Yusof said currently only flash floods were occurring, and the monsoon floods have not started yet.

“As a result, the floods are only for short periods, and some of the relief centres are already closed.

We expect the northeast monsoon floods to begin in mid-November,” he said.

- Bernama

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