After floods and wild weather, waterspout appears in Kota Kinabalu

A water spout was spotted off the Kota Kinabalu waterfront at about 11am and only lasted several minutes before it dissipated. — Picture by Julia Chan
A water spout was spotted off the Kota Kinabalu waterfront at about 11am and only lasted several minutes before it dissipated. — Picture by Julia Chan

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KOTA KINABALU, Oct 9 — A water spout spotted at the city’s waterfront here is the latest in a string of weather-related incidents to hit the State capital.

Sabah Meteorological Department director Abdul Malek Tussin said that he received reports of the sighting but could not confirm it.

“I did not see it myself, but there is a lot of cloud formations activities at sea including the cumulonimbus so its possible for the water spout to form at the current site. It probably dissipated quickly,” he said when contacted by the Malay Mail Online.

The cylindrical-shaped water phenomenon is a non-supercell tornado, which is smaller and weaker than its land counterparts and does not suck up water.

A photo of the spout is spreading on social media platforms like Facebook and Whatsapp, along with photos of damages suffered by citizens around the State capital.

Meanwhile, a landslide and one death were reported in the continuous downpour here since Saturday, causing floods, closure of schools, stalled vehicles, evacuated villages and damages to public infrastructure.

An Indonesian worker drowned when he slipped and fell into the Moyog River in Penampang, yesterday while harvesting sago near the river bank in Kampung Limbanak, here.

A landslide along the Kota Kinabalu to Tambunan road at KM 9 has affected the connections to the interior, forcing road users to use the longer alternative routes instead. No injuries have been reported from the landslide so far.

A landslip that occurred at the Kota Kinabalu-Ranau road around midnight also cut off road links till about noon yesterday, although a single lane was later cleared for vehicles to pass through.

Sabah Public Works Department director Datuk John Anthony said the roads would be closed indefinitely while repairs and remedial works, such as putting up a retaining wall or building an alternative route, might take months to complete.

In Penampang, scores of people from villages and housing estates took the day off to clean up after the aftermath of floodwater that flowed into their homes, damaging property beyond repair, and caused many to opt for a hotel for the night.

“I had to take the day off from work and mop up the house and throw away all the damaged property. I haven’t even thought about how much this damage is going to cost us,” said Melvin Robert, a resident of Kampung Kibabaig in Penampang.

Sabah State Education director Datuk Jame Alip said that 22 pupils from Sekolah Kebangsaan Kibabaig in Penampang were put up in a hotel nearby so as not to miss the re-sit of their UPSR Maths paper this morning.

He said 34 schools were affected by the flood on Monday, with most of them open today.

Abdul Malek said that Sabah has caught the tail end of Typhoon Vongfong, and it is now moving towards Japan.

“It is less worrying now,” he said.

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