Over 50,000 on standby for flood relief operation

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Source: The SunDaily

File picture shows an aerial view of houses and plantations being submerged in floodwaters in Pengkalan Chepa, near Kota Baru, Kelantan on December 28, 2014. — AFP pic

File picture shows an aerial view of houses and plantations being submerged in floodwaters in Pengkalan Chepa, near Kota Baru, Kelantan on December 28, 2014. — AFP pic

CYBERJAYA: A total of 50,112 relief personnel comprising those from the police, Fire and Rescue Department, Health Ministry and Malaysian Armed Forces, as well as 155,000 civil defence volunteers, will be deployed when floods hit the country with the onset of the north-east monsoon expected soon.

National Disaster Management Agency (APBN) director-general Datuk Zaitun Ab Samad said the agency will ensure that there are enough assets to be deployed at district level, with standard operating procedure to be implemented for relief efforts involving the relevant agencies.

“We are also integrating radio communication between the agencies expected to be involved so that we can disseminate the right information to the media and public promptly,” she said after visiting the National Disaster Command Centre (PKPB) in Pulau Meranti this afternoon.

Currently, she said, the agency has identified 5,112 relief centres with emergency stockpiles ready to be supplied from 565 forward-based stations, 56 mini depots and five main warehouses across the country.

Food kits and partitions at relief centres would be among the items to be introduced by APBN in preparation for the monsoon.

“We are organising these items after we learned from last year’s flood crisis that it was not possible to cook in some situations and the flood victims also required a bit of space for privacy,” she said.

“The food kit contains cookies, mineral water, instant food like oats and noodle soup and other food products, supplied by Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (Fama),” she said.

She added that the agency is initiating a programme to reach out to the community at the flood-prone areas, “so that the community would know what to do when disaster hits them”.

The command centre is manned around the clock by four personnel per shift to monitor any disaster situation including floods, tsunami and landslides, by utilising the Government Integrated Radio Network (GIRN) across 16 agencies for relief effort coordination.

The public is encouraged to contact the 24-hour command centre’s hotline number at 03-8064 2400 for updates on the situation or http://portalbencana.ndcc.gov.my/Portal/ for real-time information.

 

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