Kedah flood: CDERT-Community significantly improves flood response and coordination

ADIE SURI ZULKEFLI

ALOR STAR: In 2010, residents in Kampung Baru Teluk, Bukit Pinang here were left clueless when their village was hit by flood waters, among the worst in the state for decades.

However, when the village was hit by a flash flood yesterday, the response process, right from the Village Security and Development Committee (JKKK) level up to the emergency relief agencies went on smoothly, in a short period.

Thanks to the Civil Defence Emergency Respond Team-Community (CDERT-C), the local community leaders are better prepared to coordinate evacuation and relief efforts.

Kampung Baru Teluk JKKK chairman Abu Bakar Abdullah said through the CDERT-C, all he needed to do was just to alert the Malaysia Civil Defence Force (APM) when the village was hit by the flash flood.

"The APM officers then alerted other relevant agencies such as the police, the Welfare Department and the District Office to coordinate evacuation and getting the flood relief centres ready to receive the evacuees," he said when met at SK Haji Abu Bakar here today during a visit by Bukit Pinang Penghulu Mohd Asri Daud today.

Present was Kota Setar district APM officer Lt Mohd Zain Bahrum.

One of the flood evacuees at the school, Rohani Yaakob, 58, praised the authorities for their quick action in relocating them after her home was flooded yesterday.

She also thanked the Prime Minister's Department for supplying a special tent under the National Disaster Management Agency to house her mother Lijah Debok, 80, who is paralysed due to stroke.

"With the tent, we were able to place my mother on the ground floor comfortably without having to face the hassle of carrying her to the designated classroom for flood evacuees located on the upper floor," she said.


(File pix) The APM officers then alerted other relevant agencies such as the police, the Welfare Department and the District Office to coordinate evacuation and getting the flood relief centres ready to receive the evacuees. (Pics by Sharul Hafiz Zam)

Meanwhile, Ahmad Abu Bakar, 62, and wife Rohani Hamid, 56, from Kampung Teluk are praying hard for a fairer weather in the next few days after their home was inundated by a half-metre flood water yesterday.

Ahmad said it was the worst flash flood at the village after the major flood disaster in 2010.

"We have a tedious clean up to do as we did not manage to move most of the furniture and other belongings as the flood water rose so quick.

"Fortunately, the APM members and students from Maahad Darul Hasyimie nearby are helping us with the clean up works," he said.

The number of flood evacuees in the state reduced from 130 people to 77 after the only flood relief centre in Kubang Pasu was closed today.

The remaining evacuees from Kota Setar district are seeking shelter at SK Haji Abu Bakar, Surau As Syakirin and Maahad Darul Hasyimie. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd