Greater preparation to face worse floods
PUTRAJAYA: Having gleamed lessons from the 2010 floods which affected many states throughout the country, the government has prepared an even more comprehensive flood response plan to ensure public safety.
At a Press conference here yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said greater focus has been given on ensuring that food supplies and basic necessities will be able to reach areas cut off due to heavy flooding.
“The Social Welfare Department have listed 5,156 evacuation centres that can hold up to 1.4 million flood victims throughout the nation and Disaster Relief Depots have been made ready in five regions with 477 forward bases,” he said, adding that the government's priority will be on rescue missions to avoid deaths, injuries and accidents from occuring.
“State-level Social Welfare Departments have been given ample food supplies as part of the preparations to serve the flood victims. If flooding occurs, we can deploy the basic necessities and food supply immediately.
We have also identified areas vulnerable to being cut off from access and have taken steps to ensure that we will be able to send supplies to those areas. Land, sea and airborne assets as well as water pumps and generators are ready for deployment and have been placed at strategic locations near high-risk flood areas.”
Muhyiddin, also the Education Minister, said a three-day supply of food and basic necessities will be deployed at the evacuation and flood relief centres and more will be delivered as and when needed.
“We have prepared a support team for all schools that will become evacuation centres, with 2,459 schools in 120 districts identified as relief centres. Furthermore, 28,000 officers, not including volunteers, the police and the military are ready for deployment. A total of 12,500 volunteers from non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are also ready to lend us aid.”
The Meteorological Department reported that this year the country might face up to 20 to 40 per cent more rainfall from November 2011 to March 2012 compared to last year.
Based on their estimates, the situation could be worse compared to 2010 due to the expected high tides that will occur from Dec 25 this year until January next year. The states identified as high-risk are Kelantan, Terengganu, Pahang, Perak, Kedah, Perlis and Sabah.
The government has also identified 96 secondary schools and 414 primary schools as being in the high-risk category. Muhyiddin said if the flood situation becomes very bad, these schools will be shut down.
He also reminded NGOs which intends to provide aid to register with the relevant government agencies such as the Disaster Control Operations Centre, Social Welfare Department and the hospitals' Emergency Medical Teams.