Preparations made for monsoon

KUCHING: Heavy rainfall, strong winds and thunderstorms are expected to hit the state by mid-November as the country is experiencing a monsoon transition.

The State Disaster Management Committee is prepared to face the coming Northeast Monsoon, said Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas after chairing the committee’s meeting at Wisma Bapa Malaysia yesterday.

Uggah (second left) symbolically hands over masks to a representative of the state Civil Defence Force. At left is Welfare and Community Wellbeing Assistant Minister Datuk Francis Harden Hollis while at second right is Deputy State Secretary Datuk Ik Pahon Joyik.

He added the wet weather would frequently occur in the evening in most parts of Sarawak especially in Kuching, Samarahan, Serian, Sri Aman, Betong, Sarikei, Sibu, Mukah, Kapit and Bintulu.

The meeting was to discuss the state’s preparation for the monsoon season from November 2019 to March 2020, which may result in a series of rain especially in central and western Sarawak.

“During this period continuous rainfall for up to three consecutive days can result in floods in low-lying areas and flood-prone areas.

“If heavy rainfall coincides with high tide, the risk of flooding will be even worse. The highest tide can reach up to 6.5 metres,” said Uggah who is chairman of the committee.

He said according to the weather forecasts, Bintulu and Miri were expected to receive between 300 mm and 500 mm of rainfall in November and December

Sri Aman, Sarikei, Mukah and Sibu regions are expected to receive between 400 mm and 550 mm in December and January.

He added that for January and February, Kuching, Samarahan and Serian divisions were expected to receive high rainfall of 400 mm to 800 mm.

Therefore, manpower (personnel from various relevant agencies), logistics and disaster relief centres had been allocated to assist and cater for victims during the disaster.

“I will look at issues related to disaster management and take appropriate steps, working with relevant departments and agencies to ensure that disaster management machinery at all levels can operate smoothly,” he assured. Uggah later presented 3,000 pieces of AirPlus smart mask and 200 pieces of AirPlus micro ventilators donated by Temasek Foundation International CLG Limited through the Sarawak Trade and Tourism Office Singapore (Statos) to the state’s Civil Defence Force.