ALOR SETAR: The Fire and Rescue Department has set up the Northeast Monsoon Rapid Action Team, which will be deployed in several specific zones, in preparation to face the possibility of major flood disasters nationwide.
Its director-general Datuk Seri Abdul Wahab Mat Yasin (pic) said the teams would be equipped with various special assets, and if their services were needed they would be immediately mobilised to the scene of the incident.
“For example, in the East Coast Zone, this team is stationed at the Malaysian Fire and Rescue Academy in Wakaf Tapai, Terengganu, while the Southern Zone team is stationed at the Kluang Fire and Rescue station (BBP), Johor.
“For the Northern Zone, the team is placed at JBPM Air Base in Bertam, Penang, while in the Borneo Zone, they will be stationed in Miri, Sarawak. This team (among others) will help evacuate victims who are surrounded by floods,” he said after attending the Kedah JBPM Excellent Service Awards ceremony.
Regarding air assets, he said that the Fire and Rescue Department had nine aircraft, of various types, which would be used to evacuate flood victims as well as to deliver food supplies to required locations, especially in rural areas.
“We also collaborate with the Health Ministry, and we will not only help take patients to hospital in the event of an emergency, but we are also ready to fly doctors and nurses to the required locations,” he said.
He also reminded the community, especially the elderly, those who were not in good health, pregnant women and children, to evacuate as soon as possible if there were signs of imminent flooding in their residential areas.
“There are 5,648 flood hotspots which have been identified nationwide, and in Kedah alone, there are 259 hotspots.
“However, we are prepared in case of unusual rainfall, in addition to patrolling the areas,” he said. – BK