Penang Water Supply Corporation (PBAPP) chief executive officer Datuk Jaseni Maidinsa said people can see dam levels on the spot.
“To make things clearer, we have also set up LED boards at the dam sites to display the dam’s effective capacities.
“As such, people can immediately grasp and understand the status of the dams and the availability of raw water.
“Public understanding and support will help PBAPP promote water conservation among the community, especially during the dry seasons when dam levels are low,” he said in a recent statement.
He also said opening dams to the public promotes community water awareness, supports healthy activities, enhances dam security and reflects transparency in dam management.
“This is the primary reason PBAPP welcomes visitors to the Ayer Itam and Teluk Bahang Dam.
“Thousands of walkers, runners, hikers, cyclists, taichi, yoga practitioners, photographers and naturalists visit the dams daily.
“Auxiliary police posts are also set up on the dam premises and are manned on a 24-7 basis.
“PBAPP auxiliary police personnel also patrol the premises on a two-hourly basis.
“As a result, dam visitors may enjoy their recreational pursuits in refreshing environments that are carefully managed to be safe and secure,” Jaseni added.
He said PBAPP believes in cultivating ‘public ownership’ of the dam areas and water catchment areas.
“Regular dam visitors have vested interests in preserving the safety and security of their recreational area.
“As such, having more people keeping more eyes on the dams actually enhances dam security.
“By placing the dams in the public eye, every aspect of dam operations, from maintaining the grass berms to ensuring public safety to daily monitoring of effective capacities, would have to stand up to public scrutiny,” he said.
He added that PBAPP would also allow public access into the expanded Mengkuang Dam once the Water, Land and Natural Resources Ministry hands the dam back to the state before being taken over by PBAPP, and the dam is verified to be safe.
The Ayer Itam and Teluk Bahang Dams are open to the public from 7am to 7pm daily.
Admission to the dams is free of charge.