Fishy deaths probed

River of death: A resident taking a closer look at the fishes found dead in Sungai Dondang in Paya Terubong.

THE death of hundreds of fishes in Sungai Dondang and Sungai Pinang has raised concerns about toxic chemicals being discharged into the Penang rivers.

State Drainage and Irrigation Department (DID) director Anuar Yahya said they went to collect the water samples from both rivers yesterday after being alerted by the public.

“The samples have been sent for analysis to determine the cause of pollution,” he said, adding that the water from Sungai Dondang flowed into Sungai Pinang.

It was reported that residents living in Paya Terubong near the Sungai Dondang had noticed the dead fishes floating in the river on Monday evening.

And just a few days ago, a family of 10 smooth-coated otters had taken up residence along Sungai Pinang.

Local Government Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow, who was elated with the development, had posted photographs of the mammals on his Facebook page.

Sungai Pinang was categorised in 2006 as one of the seven most polluted rivers in the country, earning a dubious Class Five ranking – the highest pollution level under Malaysia’s Water Quality Index.

Chow said Sungai Pinang pollution tests fluctuated between Class Two and Three levels last year.

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