BUKIT MERTAJAM, Nov 5 — Desperate times call for desperate measures.
A Penang family had no choice but to use a boat as a hearse today in order to transport a coffin through knee-high floodwaters to a crematorium for a relative’s final send-off.
According to The Sun, the family of Lim Ah Gao, 89, who died of natural causes, decided to borrow the vessel when floodwaters rose too high for conventional modes of transportation after Penang was hit by an almost day-long downpour yesterday.
The boat is said to belong to the Sungai Puyu Volunteer Fire Services.
A video clip that was widely shared via WhatsApp today showed the casket floating down Jalan Padang Lalang in Bukit Mertajam on a boat accompanied by Lim’s relatives carrying traditional offerings as curious passers-by looked on.
It is understood that the funeral procession safely reached its intended destination of the Berapit Chinese Cemetery where final funeral rites were carried out.
About 80 per cent of Penang on both the island and mainland were inundated by flash floods following continuous heavy rainfall that lasted nearly 18 hours straight since 2pm yesterday.
Parts of neighbouring Kedah state have also been affected.
The Meteorological Department has issued a “red” alert warning of more continuous heavy rain in Penang and Kedah today.