Radio hams on flood duty to keep messages flowing


HULU TERENGGANU: Amateur radio (or “ham radio”) operators will be enlisted to help keep up communications links should there be a breakdown during the year-end monsoon floods.

Deputy Communications Minister Jailani Johari said the ministry, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission, and amateur radio associations would act as go-between in relaying information.

“The amateur radio associations will be the link between us and the community as sometimes when a flood occurs, there would be communication disruption in certain areas,” he told reporters after visiting ailing residents at Kampung Dusun here yesterday.

Jailani who is also Hulu Terengganu MP, said MCMC conducted a flood simulation exercise for the east coast in September involving several agencies.

He said his constituency was also making efforts to persuade youngsters to sign up as disaster aid volunteers.

“We have also held discussions with the Hulu Terengganu district office and a number of agencies on preparations for the flood which annually affect residents in this district particularly those in the interior,” he said.

Jailani said more than five new evacuation centres costing about RM200,000 each had been built in his constituency over the past two years.

“These include the new evacuation centres at Kampung Kuala Ping, Kampung Padang Setar and Kampung Nibong where the old centres were no longer suitable and flood victims had to stay at the surau and mosque,” he said.

He said the centres were equipped with basic facilities and also had space for tailoring classes and an office which could be utilised on normal days when there is no flood.