A million in Klang Valley to go without water - maybe for days

  • Nation
  • Saturday, 31 Aug 2013

PETALING JAYA: Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor (Syabas) has activated its emergency response plan to Code Red following the closure of four treatment plants caused by diesel spillage 10km away from the intake area.

Over one million consumers in seven districts will be affected by water disruption due to the closure of the Sungai Selangor Phase 1, 2 and 3 and Rantau Panjang treatment plants to facilitate clean-up works.

The current treated water reserve at the four plants can only last for a day.

The four plants produce 2.67 billion litres of water daily, catering to 57% of water demand in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.

Districts affected are Petaling, Kuala Lumpur, Klang/Shah Alam, Gombak, Hulu Selangor, Kuala Langat and Kuala Selangor.

Syabas is appealing to consumers to prudently use water from the existing storage, as the duration of disruption could not be ascertained as yet.

Corporate Communication and Public Affairs department deputy general manager Priscilla Alfred said the Code Red was activated at 4pm yesterday and staff were put on standby.

Code Red is activated when a situation is most severe and affects more than a million consumers.

“LUAS (Lembaga Urus Air Selangor) has initiated a cleaning up exercise,” she said.

It is also seeking help from the Government to help transport water supply to affected consumers, as its facilities are not designed to cater to such a massive water disruption.

Syabas could only provide 42 mobile water tankers and 525 static tankers to assist those affected.

The operators of the affected plants discovered the diesel spillage from a factory nearby at 8am yesterday, and immediately stopped operations.

Selangor state secretary Datuk Mohd Khusrin Munawi, who heads the state water monitoring committee, hoped that the clean-up operations could be completed within 12 hours.

He said the factory located up­st­ream from Sungai Selangor Phase 2, near Rawang, had been ordered to cease operations immediately.

He said the two to three days to get the plants functioning was necessary as they needed to be cleaned as well.

“If works to clean up the river cannot be done by tonight, the situation is only going to get worse,” he said yesterday.

Prolonged closure of the treatment plants would result in low water pressure in the seven affected districts.

With high demand and treated water reserve capacity at around 1%, Syabas warned that recovery period would take a long time – even after the four water treatment plants resumed operations.

Syabas said it would keep consumers updated on the situation periodically.

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