KOTA BARU, Dec 13 — The massive flood that hit Kelantan in December 2014 not only left the victims traumatised but also with heartbreaking memories.

According to the Kelantan National Security Council’s (MKN) statistics, more than 170,000 families in the state had to be relocated to 170 temporary evacuation centres (PPS), while 1,927 houses were destroyed.

The ‘Bah Kuning’ (yellow floods) not only sent thousands of residents into a panic to save themselves but the situation was also felt by the ministries and agencies tasked with carrying out rescue operations and providing necessities to the victims.


The situation became even more chaotic when land communications, power supply and telecommunications were disrupted at two hospitals in the state, namely Raja Perempuan Zainab Hospital II (HRPZ II) and Kuala Krai Hospital.

Recounting the harrowing experience, HRPZ II assistant medical officer Mohd Zuki Mohd Zain said he and his friends had to work hard to transfer several patients to the Universiti Sains Malaysia (HUSM) Hospital in Kubang Kerian when floodwaters began to rise at the HRPZ II.

“At about 2am, my friends and I had to transfer patients using trucks from the Malaysian Civil Defence Force (APM) and the Malaysian Fire and Rescue Department (JBPM).


“It was dark because there was a power outage when we were wading through the rising water. I was terrified and anxious because that was the first time in my life that I had endured such an experience.

“We were trying to save the patients and equipment used by them,” he told Bernama recently.

Recounting her experience, HRPZ II head nurse Masslila Ali said that since not many staff were on duty at the time of the incident at midnight, she had to move some of the paediatric patients from the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) because the floodwaters had risen up to the waist level.

Kelantan State Health Department (JKNK) director Datuk Dr Zaini Hussin said that when the entire hospital area was flooded, wards and other affected hospital facilities had to be closed and patients moved to safer areas.

The state government also suffered huge losses due to damage to hospital equipment and property.

Dr Zaini said that following the incident, the government approved a flood mitigation project under the First Rolling Plan (RP1) of the 11th Malaysia Plan (11MP), costing RM8 million, and this project is the first to be implemented in an existing government facility.

“The 2014 floods have taught many lessons to all stakeholders, especially to the community and government agencies in terms of preparing the standard operating procedures (SOP) to deal with such disaster.

“Not only can the flood mitigation project improve the level of infrastructure facilities, but also ensure more effective and efficient health services can be delivered during the flood season,” he said, adding the project was launched by former Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin on Oct 10.

Meanwhile, HRPZ II assistant medical officer chief supervisor Suzura Hassan, who is also the Flood Operations Room head, said the project included several main areas, namely the construction of concrete fencing, water drainage and other mechanical and electrical works such as water pumping systems and flood barrier systems.

“This project will take 30 months to complete and 15 flood barriers will be built to prevent floodwaters from entering the hospital premises.

“In addition, we have provided hands-on training to about 1,000 hospital staff so they know how to install this material. We have also distributed installation videos so that in the event of a flood, they will be prepared and know what to do,” she said.

HRPZ II Pharmacy officer Anuar Ab Rahim described the government’s proactive measures and efforts to implement the project as apt, especially taking into account the unpredictable weather conditions. — Bernama