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Jun 16, 2010

Flash floods wreak havoc

The heavy rain caused flooding at the Orchard Road and the Scotts Road intersection for about an hour making it impassable to traffic. -- PHOTO: STOMP

FLASH floods caused by heavy downpour on Wednesday morning wreaked havoc on many parts of central Singapore, flooding basement carparks and shops, and making roads impassable to cars.

The worst-hit area was the Orchard Road and Scotts Road intersection, with large stretches from Paterson Road - where Ion Orchard and Wheelock Towers are - to Ngee Ann City submerged in nearly half a metre of flood waters.

The basement of Liat Towers was flooded, affecting shops like Starbucks and Hermes, which reported goods destroyed by floodwaters. A number of cars stalled in the rising floodwaters, stranding motorists. Many passengers were also reported to be stuck in buses in areas where traffic was impassable. Traffic lights were out at some inter-sections.

A tree fell near the Buyong Road exit of the Central Expressway Tunnel, towards Ayer Rajah Expressway, blocking traffic across three lanes. The CTE was closed as a result, partly to prevent traffic from going into Orchard Road.

Other parts of central Singapore, including Coronation Road West, Fourth Avenue, Kings Road, Kheam Hock Road and Veerasamy Road were also affected, bringing traffic to a crawl.

PUB, in a statement issued on Wednesday afternoon, said almost 100 mm of rain fell within a two-hour period from about 9 am to 11 am. 'The amount of rainfall is approximately more than 60 per cent of the average monthly rainfall for June,' it said.

PUB, Traffic Police and SCDF officers were at the various sites providing help to motorists and directing traffic. The PUB advises the public to exercise caution as flash floods may still occur in the event of heavy storms. The cause of the flood is still being investigated.

The public can obtain the latest weather reports, including heavy rain warnings, by tuning in to radio broadcasts, calling NEA's weather forecast hotline at 6542 7788, visiting the NEA website at www.nea.gov.sg or accessing the mobile weather service (Weather@SG - weather.nea.gov.sg).

The public can also call PUB's 24-hour Call Centre at 1800-284 6600 to report obstructions in drains or to check the flood situation. If you know of other affected areas, send details and photos to stonline@sph.com.sg.

Read also:
Floods hit shops, business
What cause flash floods?


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