Smart Tunnel is closed during heavy rain, says FT minister

FT Minister Khalid Abdul Samad says the Smart Tunnel is able to prevent worse flash flood problems from taking place in Kuala Lumpur. — Picture by Hari Anggara
FT Minister Khalid Abdul Samad says the Smart Tunnel is able to prevent worse flash flood problems from taking place in Kuala Lumpur. — Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 17 ― Federal Territories Minister Khalid Abdul Samad rejected allegations that the Syarikat Mengurus Air Banjir and Terowong Sdn Bhd (Smart) tunnel fail to function well during heavy rains but on the other hand a large rainfall distribution at any one time causes it to close.

Khalid said the tunnel was able to prevent worse flash flood problems from taking place in Kuala Lumpur as it was equipped with two layers of automatic water control doors at both ends and was able to accommodate flood water and could be used again (by motorists) several hours later.

“To say the Smart Tunnel is not working properly ... actually if it is not there, the flood situation will be worse as had happened at Dataran Merdeka.

“The Smart tunnel can reduce the problem of flash floods in the capital but sometimes during overly heavy rains, the water flow is blocked and this is aggravated by the choked drainage systems causing erratic water flow, “ he told reporters at the 'November Run 2018' run by the Federal Territories Community Development Department (Kemas) at Kampung Sri Batu Community Activities Centre here today.

Khalid was commenting on the picture that were viralled regarding the Smart Tunnel following the flash floods that hit the main streets in the capital, a few days ago.

According to him, the prolific developments around Kuala Lumpur also made it difficult to clean up wastes that clog the drainage system.

“When there is a lot of development and no reservoirs, sand and rubbish will be stuck (in the drainage system) during heavy rains and (preventing) water from flowing to nearby rivers.

“The dumping of garbage into the river is also one of the causes of the blockage of the drainage system slowing down the flow of water and cause flash floods,” he said.

Khalid, who is also Shah Alam Member of Parliament, said he had instructed Kuala Lumpur City Hall to conduct a study to ensure that the drainage system was functioning well and maintained well to prevent blocked water flow during heavy rain.

Meanwhile, Khalid said the run involving kindergarten pupils and parents in Kuala Lumpur was aimed at encouraging them to adopt a healthy lifestyle and ensure optimum health.

“At present, it is not difficult to do leisure activities because many recreational parks are provided by the government besides the gym centres available,” he said. ― Bernama

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