HomeNEWSKulim screening ward flooded after 2hr downpour

Kulim screening ward flooded after 2hr downpour

Water gushing from a car park next to Kulim Hospital’s accident and emergency driveway, which was converted to makeshift wards and Covid-19 testing centres.

GEORGE TOWN: A two-hour downpour brought flash floods in many parts of Kulim this evening, with up to 25cm of water in the temporary wards at Kulim hospital.

Photographs of the scene at the Accident and Emergency Department of the hospital have been making the rounds, showing the flood at the makeshift wards in the hospital driveway.

Kedah executive councillor Dr Mohd Hayati Othman said the affected area was a Covid-19 screening camp house at the A&E area. He confirmed that the flooding was caused by gushing waters from a nearby car park.

A worker at the hospital told FMT the flash floods had been going on for the last few weeks, since an adjacent football field was converted into a car park.

The worker said the existing drainage system there must be upgraded so as to cope with rainwater from the carpark, which is located on higher ground.

Hayati said the hospital had requested that a drain be built at the affected area.

“There is expensive equipment in the screening camp and fortunately, it was saved in the nick of time. I hope the Public Works Department and the state Health Department step in quickly and prioritise the building of a drain there,” he told reporters.

In other parts of Kulim, many roads were impassable. Video clips shared online showed many motorists braving at least a metre of floodwaters.

A patient lying under one of the makeshift wards at the Kulim Hospital.

Taman Seluang resident Praveen Nair told FMT that flash floods are becoming a common occurrence in his neighbourhood, as monsoon drains are filled with mud.

A Civil Defence official said two evacuation centres have been opened in the Kulim area as at 9 pm.

Kulim assemblyman Yeo Keng Chuan said flooding also took place at Kampung Paya, Taman Sri Kulim, and Taman Seroja.

He said the Drainage and Irrigation Department has spent RM345,920 to deepen Tasik Putra to mitigate the recurring flash floods in the area.

“I feel the rainfall today has exceeded normal levels and the existing rivers and drains were unable to cope with the speed of the run-off,” he said when contacted.

Yeo said the recent 2021 Kedah state budget has put aside RM4.4 million in flood mitigation projects for Kulim, Baling and Kuala Muda districts.

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