Worst flood in 20 years, say Hulu Kelang residents

By May Robertson

KUALA LUMPUR, April 13 — A major cleaning spree took place in Hulu Kelang following floods in the area on Tuesday.

Those living near the Middle Ring Road 2 said this was the worst ever flooding in the area in 20 years.

Lorong Penghulu residents in Hulu Kelang were forced to clear out of their homes and throw away damaged items yesterday after flash floods inundated the area around 3.30pm.

Personal driver Saibul Ismail, 47, said the floods were one of the worst he had seen in 20 years.

“It was impossible to save everything in my home and I lost some important documents,” he said.

“We could not get out of the house, the best we could do was find a dry spot to wait for the rain to stop.”

Among items damaged by the floods were his mattress, carpets and stove.

In Hulu Kelang’s Tadika Kemas, teachers had a scare  when they were forced to evacuate eight students aged four to six to the nearby SK Hulu Kelang.

At around 4pm, Janaria Ashari, 36,  realised water in the kindergarten had risen to her knees.

“I was worried students might drown. After we abandoned the kindergarten, water continued to rise,” she said.

“When we went back to the premise to collect several items, water had risen up to our waists.”

Yesterday, around 10 teachers and parents gathered at the kindergarten to clean the premise. Teachers were seen drying out wet teaching material outside the kindergarten.

“The kindergarten was filthy and many educational posters were damaged,” said the kindergarten’s chairman Razi Ayop.

“It took us at least five hours to get all of the water out and dry the place.

“This is the first time we have experienced a flood so bad, previously water would only rise to our ankles,” he said.

Another resident of Hulu Kelang, Zainuddin, believes the water level rose in the area due to construction projects along the river banks.

“Construction in the area could be causing the rise in flood waters, as they are tampering with the flow of water,” said Zainuddin who lives across the Klang river.

“We never had problems like this until a few years ago, it has gotten so bad the wall I built to keep water out of my home has been broken down by the current.”

The operator of Ampang Yong Tau Foo restaurant, beside the Klang river near Gurdwara Sahib Ampang, also said the floods have been affecting its business since the beginning of the year.

“It has been frustrating, every time it rains our toilet gets completely submerged in dirty water,” said Elaine Siow.

“It takes half an hour to clean the toilet each time it is flooded, this is time consuming.

“We have to be extremely cautious with the way we dispose plastic bags and rubbish flowing from the river into our restaurant as it is unhygienic,” said the 30-year-old.

Ampang Jaya Municipal Council mobilised some 30 workers from its landscape, youth, community and enforcement departments for cleaning up works.

A spokesman from the council said the clean-up lasted from 7pm-11pm the same night.

The council’s cleaning initiatives were carried out at SK Hulu Kelang, Taman Teratai, Astana Court and Kampung Pasir.