KOTA BHARU, Jan 2 — The Communications and Multimedia Ministry (KKMM) has suggested building higher platforms of around three metres (10 feet) at 1,000 telecommunication towers affected by the recent floods.
Its minister, Tan Sri Annuar Musa said the move was so that damage to the telecommunication towers was reduced and to ensure that communications would not be cut off, especially in the event of disasters.
“I have also asked the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) to take the initiative to ensure telecommunication towers at flood-prone areas would not have equipment at ground level in the future.
“Communication systems should not be cut off even if water rises to 10 feet or even after floods recede. With this initiative, at least those trapped on rooftops of their houses can send SOS (for help),” he said at a media conference after completing the Jelajah Prihatin KKMM programme at Yayasan Kemiskinan Kelantan (YKK) Peringat, here today.
Media outlets previously reported that repairs to almost 1,000 telecommunication towers that sustained damage and caused disruptions to telecommunication coverage after the recent floods hit were completed.
Annuar added that he wanted related parties, including the Information Department and the Department of Broadcasting to draft a more effective information delivery system in flood-prone areas, including early warnings.
“The current way are conventional methods, such as Info On Wheels (IOW) and such, but they are limited…but I want information that can reach every user exposed to disasters wherever they are.
“Look at Japan, when an earthquake is about to happen, even a minor one, the information will reach every mobile phone user, even tourists will receive the message.
“Even though we currently have a system I want a better one, especially after what we went through with the recent floods,” he said.
In other developments, he said that 5,000 Keluarga Malaysia Community volunteers have been mobilised so far to assist in post-flood efforts, including cleaning houses.
“Other countries would take around three months to recover from floods like this. Yet we can handle the problem within a matter of two weeks.
“Citizens have received many government incentives under Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s leadership, in addition to cash aid, food provisions and electric equipment being channelled to flood victims so quickly,” he added.