Rising waters affect travel, safety

National 2 minutes, 28 seconds


FLOODING in Tutong district has affected various aspects of the residents’ lives, including their daily commute while also raising concerns over safety.

The Brunei Times yesterday spoke to a number of villagers, who shared how days of heavy rain and rising floods have inconvenienced them.

As the main road leading to Kg Lamunin was cut off by floods, residents have had to find alternative routes to get home.

Among the commuters was Roy Chuchu, who worked at a private firm in Gadong.

He shared that it took him an hour longer to reach his destination, due to the floods.

“The main road was flooded and no car was able to drive through it. There is only one way in and out of my village now, which is a narrow road in Kg Bukit Panggal,” Roy said.

“It took me an extra hour to reach my office in the morning as everyone was using the same road, and it created heavy traffic,” he added.

Roy has also had to buy a full tank of petrol in the capital before heading home, since the petrol station in his village was out of fuel after the floods made it inaccessible for re-supply.

Meanwhile, other residents have had to move their cars to higher ground since their homes were inundated. This, however, has kept residents weary of the possibility that the flood waters could still rise and reach their parked cars.

A Kg Bukit Udal resident, Siti Aminah said she had to bring extra clothing to work due to the persistent rains and floods. Instead of driving all the way to her workplace in the capital, she had to get someone to pick her up at a location as well as ride along with other residents on a military vehicle.

“I drive my car to ‘point A’. This is the place where the army truck will bring us to point B (where it was) dry. I had to leave my car by the roadside and get a friend who stayed away from the flooded areas (and) car pool in order to get to work,” she said.

Siti Aminah added that the hassle of bringing an extra change of clothes was necessary since she would get soaked due to the transitions in between vehicles.

The 10-minute drive in the army truck was a hectic, especially when it was raining, she remarked.

Walking in the floodwaters was also dangerous, 35-year-old Alan Yee from Kg Penapar said.

He spoke of the dangers of crocodiles and snakes, which have been seen while wading in the waist-deep water.

“At one time, I saw a crocodile coming out of the water towards higher ground. It was scary and I had to find an alternative way to go through,” Yee recalled.

“Some residents also encountered snakes in the water.”

“This is the worst flood that has happened. Usually, flooding occurs generally around December but not as bad as this,” he said.

The Brunei Times