Waterfall Dangers During Rainy Seasons
"Many of them think of having fun only and do not bother too much about the safety aspects."
As we are winding down during the school holidays, some families are still squeezing in a couple more trips to the beaches, other outings and even to some waterfalls.
It is also coincidentally the wet season on the west of the peninsula (Apr-Oct) which brings thunderstorms in the afternoons. These are usually brief, and the odd downpour is a welcome way to cool everything down.
The rain during monsoon season can also mean waterfalls where moments before, a gentle rush of little creeks, can suddenly turn turbulent and muddy to a degree that truly frightens. Many people are unaware that waterfalls pose a danger during rainy seasons. Rain gathers from higher up creating turbulent amounts of water like a water avalanche.
Husband's First Hand Experience
He was in primary school and the family had gone to a famous waterfall back in our hometown. It was right after a down pour and they had hiked to the pools that were midway to the top. While happily playing in the pool, someone came running down yelling for them to get out of the water.
They were out for about 15 minutes before turbulent amounts of water came gushing down. Water had gathered higher up from the down pour earlier and there was no telling the extent of the run off from the mountains. It was a good thing they got out of the water in time, as the currents would have swept them away.
Recent Waterfall Tragedy
The joy of spending time at the waterfalls in Sungai Chilling, Hulu Selangor turned to tragedy when one of six friends drowned two days ago. The private college student who was not a good swimmer, died when he tried to follow a friend who had dived into the water. His younger sibling saw him crying out for help and tried to help but failed.
There was also an article in The Star last year warning the community about dangers at waterfalls. A villager who stays near the Batu Berangkai Waterfalls in Kampar had this to say:
“Many of them think of having fun only and do not bother too much about the safety aspects. Those who have met with unfortunate accidents here are usually not from the village, that’s why they don’t know about the strong water currents here,”
While I'm not saying we should avoid waterfalls at all cost, I am saying to heed the warnings. Be reminded that mother nature is not to be messed with and do not go right after a heavy down pour to avoid unwanted incidences. You can get swept or trapped in currents and being pummeled on to rocks can break your bones.
Aside from drowning, you still can get hurt by logs, debris or even trash caught in the currents. No matter how good a swimmer you are, a swimmer tires - water do not.