Thursday, January 3, 2019

Stay clear of east coast beaches, people warned as storm worsens

Stay clear of east coast beaches, people warned as storm worsens

The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency says heavy rain, strong winds and rough seas could be expected in Kelantan, Terengganu and Penang among others. 
PUTRAJAYA: With tropical storm Pabuk worsening, the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) today advised the people and the maritime community from going to sea on the east coast until Sunday.
Its deputy director-general, Mohd Zubil Mat Som, said the bad weather warning – code orange – issued by the Meteorological Department (JMM) at 11.45am reported that Pabuk was at 6.1 degrees north and 104.5 degrees east and expected to move at 15 kmph to the west approaching the Segenting Kra (Malaysia-Thai border).
All levels of the maritime community should take safety measures to secure their boats and ships.
“They are advised not to carry out activities such as fishing and recreational tourism following the warning issued by JMM.
Members of MMEA have also been reminded to check on their assets and detain vessels during the period,” he said.
Zubil said heavy rain with strong winds exceeding 60 kmph and rough seas with waves as high as 4.5m could be expected in the waters of Kelantan, Terengganu, Perlis, Kedah, Penang and Perak.
Residents prepare to evacuate
People living near Pantai Cahaya Bulan in Kota Bharu, Kelantan, are preparing to evacuate to a safer place as the waves grew stronger today.
A villager, Razali Rashid, 63, said his family was packing to move further away from their house located 15m from the sea.
“We have kept our documents in a surau about 500m away as I fear the waves may gush into our house,” he said.
However, Kelantan Fire and Rescue Department director Nazili Mahmood said the department had not received information on residents evacuating.
Petronas activates emergency response team
In Kuala Terengganu, Petronas has activated its emergency response team.
It said the situation is currently under control and all personnel are safe.
“Petronas’ utmost priority and concern is the safety of all personnel.
“We are liaising with the relevant authorities and monitoring the situation,” it said in a statement.
A video showing powerful winds accompanied by huge waves smashing into an oil rig in Terengganu waters has gone viral on social media since yesterday.
The situation was said to be worrying as several rig workers who were scheduled to return to the mainland today were stranded on the rig.

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