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Iconic Kinarut town hit by worst-ever floods

 | August 15, 2017

Iconic two-block wooden double-storey shophouses in Kinarut, built in the early 1900s, hit by flash floods.

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PAPAR: The iconic town of Kinarut, which dates back to the early 20th century, was hit by its worst-ever floods yesterday.

The town, which consists of two blocks of wooden double-storey shophouses, has been a historic attraction for foreign tourists and the pride of the local people.

Floodwaters rose to 1.2 metres (four feet), causing damage to goods in about a dozen sundry stores.

Fung Wah Loong, who has been operating his grocery store for 10 years, told FMT he had never experienced such serious flooding before.

The Sungai Labak cuts through the town.

Fung said the river overflowed and rose quickly.

“Flooding is quite a normal occurrence here but usually the water is only ankle or shin high. This time, it was waist high,” he said, pointing to the water mark left on his shop’s wall.

Hundreds of bottles of drinking water and sacks of rice damaged by flood in Kinarut town.

Hundreds of bottles of drinking water and sacks of rice damaged by flood in Kinarut town.

Hundreds of bottles of drinking water and sacks of rice were damaged by the floodwaters. Fung said he had no choice but to dispose of them.

“I couldn’t save the bottled drinking water and rice in time.”

He said his workers cleared out the debris and moved the damaged goods to the pavement in front of his shop to be discarded.

Damaged groceries taken out to the sidewalk after the flood the night before in historic Kinarut town.

Damaged groceries taken out to the sidewalk after the flood the night before in historic Kinarut town.

Another grocer, Chua Teck Hong, said his store had been in operation for 40 years and the floods this time were the worst the business community and residents had ever experienced.

“We’ve never seen such flooding before this. There was no way to flee except to the upper floor of the shophouse,” he told FMT.

He said besides the foodstuff, the drink coolers and freezers in his shop were damaged.

The surrounding villages, including Kampung Semboi, Kampung Anak and housing areas, including Rose Garden, were hit by floods for the first time.


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