Floods in Malaysia: five dead and more than 70,000 evacuated

KUALA KRAI: At least five people have been killed and more than 70,000 rushed to evacuation centers in Malaysia after monsoon-triggered floods inundated the north of the country, authorities said on Wednesday.
More than 31,000 people have fled their homes in Kelantan state while more than 39,000 residents have been evacuated to temporary shelters in the nearby town of Terengganu after flooding began at the weekend, the agency said. Bernama official press release.
Emergency services officials said a total of five people had been killed.
“Water levels have reached almost three meters (10 feet)”, Muhammad Ameenudin Badrul Hisyam from Kuala Krai district in Kelantan, told AFP, as he cleared debris from his house after a nearby river overflowed and forced his family to flee.
Local media reported that four people died in Kelantan on Monday when three sisters were electrocuted while wading through floodwaters and a 15-month-old boy drowned.
The fifth victim was a two-year-old girl swept away by strong currents in Terengganu on Sunday.
Additional evacuations took place in the states of Pahang, Johor and Perak, Bernama reported.
Malaysia’s meteorological department predicts continuous rains until Thursday in several states, including Terengganu.
Flooding is an annual phenomenon in the Southeast Asian country of 33 million people due to the northeast monsoon which brings heavy rains from November to March.
In the same month last year, the country was hit by the worst floods in its history when more than 50 people died and thousands more were displaced.
On Wednesday, newly elected Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim visited the affected areas and a school used as an evacuation center in Kelantan.
Anwar, who is also finance minister, told parliament on Tuesday that the government had initially allocated 400 million Malaysian ringgits ($90 million) to the National Disaster Management Agency to deal with the emergency.
Disaster officials said they would monitor the flooding situation in the worst-hit areas from the air.


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