By: Aida Aziz
IPOH: The recent flash flood in the Taman Fair Park area, which stranded 36 victims, was caused by a contractor’s mistake in closing the watergate in that area, according to Ipoh Mayor Datuk Rumaizi Baharin.
The project to widen the Senam River was undertaken by the Ipoh City Council in collaboration with the Ministry of Local Government and Housing (KPKT).
“We executed the project with KPKT to widen the Senam River in that area, but there was a slight technical error on the part of the contractor and related departments who closed the water gate.
“So, when unexpected rain occurred, and the water couldn’t enter the river because the gate was closed, it caused the water to kick back into the drain, resulting in a flash flood.
“The project to widen the Senam River began in December last year, and it should have been completed by the end of January, but the engineers from MBI expect it might be finished by March,” he said.
He made these remarks when asked about the cause of the flash flood in the Ipoh city area, which led many to complain about clogged drains, among other issues.
Rumaizi addressed reporters after chairing the Full Council Meeting for January on Monday.
He expressed confidence that the issue would not recur in the area as it was a first-time mistake. Additionally, increased rainfall was cited as a factor contributing to the overflow and flooding in several areas.
“When we look at the Meteorological Department’s readings, there is indeed a 20 per cent increase in rainfall in the Ipoh area.
“That’s why one of the solutions is to expand and widen the river in that area,” he added.
Earlier, the media reported that the flash flood in Taman Fair Park was caused by heavy rain for nearly three hours, leaving 36 victims stranded.
The Fire and Rescue Department was needed to carry out operations to evacuate victims to safety. The flood also inundated several business premises and submerged cars up to the door level.