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Monday, January 31, 2011

Johor floods: Two dead and nearly 29,000 evacuated


JOHOR BARU: Two people have died and 28,932 were evacuated to 200 centres statewide by 11am Monday as continuous rain in the past few days flooded many parts of Johor.
Segamat, Johor Baru and Kluang were the worst-hit areas and the bad weather was expected to continue on Tuesday, said Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman on Monday.
All of Segamat is cut off by floodwaters. It is an island.
Police said no one can get in or out of the town as the roads to Muar, Johor Baru and Kuala Lumpur are under water.
Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) has disconnected electricity supply to Segamat. Its substations have been switched off as a safety precaution.
A TNB spokesman said Monday that it was a common procedure during a flood to prevent electrocution. The supply will be restores once the floodwaters ebb to a 'safe level'.
Roads in Labis town, which was flooded Sunday, are clearing but the outskirts are still submerged.
According to the Department of Irrigation and Drainage Malaysia (DID) online river level data, three in Johor burst their banks Sunday. Sungai Muar, Sungai Benut and Sungai Mengkibol overflowed.
With the downpour continuing, the department is closely watching five more rivers – Sungai Simpang Kiri at Sri Medan, Sungai Bekok, Sungai Johor at Rantau Panjang are at a dangerous level.
Meanwhile, Reuters reported that rain-driven floods have disrupted Malaysian oil palm estates from transporting the vegetable oil to refineries and ports in key producing states of Sabah and Johor.
Planters said Monday that as much as 60,000 tonnes of crude palm oil heading to refineries in Sabah on Borneo island have been delayed as floods make it difficult for trucks to get through the estate roads, said two planters from the top producing state.
The transport delay to Malaysia's key palm oil export port of Pasir Gudang in Johor has slowed the transport and loading of cargoes, refiners said, according to Reuters.

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