A history of water cuts in Selangor this year

Residents fill their pails at a water point in Keramat AU2 following the latest water disruption October 20, 2020. — Picture by Hari Anggara
Residents fill their pails at a water point in Keramat AU2 following the latest water disruption October 20, 2020. — Picture by Hari Anggara

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PETALING JAYA, Oct 21 — Water disruptions in Selangor are increasingly becoming a problem, often leaving millions of households high and dry for several days to even a week with notice issued only at the last minute causing inconveniences to businesses and industries reliant on steady water supply.

The rivers that are most commonly polluted are Sungai Semenyih and Sungai Selangor.

As Klang Valley is hit by repeated water cuts, observers have once again questioned water management agencies’ efficiency.

Ranging from burst pipes to river streams being polluted with solvents, here is a list of water disruptions in the state since the start of the year:

February 7 

57 areas in Gombak faced water disruption due to a burst pipe at the Hulu Kelang pump house. Repair works were completed by 6.30pm on the same day, with the water supply returning to normal within 24 hours.

March 17 

Water treatment plants in Sungai Selangor (LRA) Phase 1 (SSP1), Phase 2 (SSP2), Phase 3 (SSP3) and Rantau Panjang were forced to halt operations after odour pollution was detected at the raw water intake source in Sungai Selangor. The water supply was fully restored only the next day. 

April 16 

Another round of odour pollution resulted in the Sungai Selangor Water Treatment Plant (WTP), Phase 1 (SSP1), Phase 2 (SSP2) and Phase 3 (SSP3) shutting down, affecting 1.2 million users in KL, Petaling, Klang, Shah Alam, Kuala Selangor, Hulu Selangor, Gombak and Kuala Langat. Operations resumed the following morning, with the water supply slowly restored to normal starting at noon for the next 24 hours.

June 11 

A water pipe near Jalan Langat in Klang burst, affecting the areas of Bandar Bistari and Batu 5 and 6. Repair works were completed by 1.30pm on the same day, and water supply completely restored by 2am on June 12.

July 14 

Almost 300 areas were affected by a scheduled water disruption due to repair and improvement works to the Sungai Selangor Phase 3 Water Treatment Plant. The works were completed on July 17 and the plant fully operation by 5pm, by which time nearly 90 per cent of those affected had their water supply resumed.

August 11 

20 areas in Gombak faced another round of water disruption, this time due to scheduled upgrading and replacement of critical assets at the Sungai Gombak Water Treatment Plant. The water supply was fully restored by 9.30am the following day.

September 3

1,292 areas in the Klang Valley, Petaling, Klang/Shah Alam, Kuala Selangor, Hulu Selangor, Gombak and Kuala Langat experienced an unscheduled water supply disruption, following the halting of operations the water treatment plants in Sungai Selangor Phases 1, 2, 3 and Rantau Panjang, due to odour pollution that was later identified to have come from a factory in Rawang. This disruption was the longest for Selangor in 2020 yet, with the supply fully restored by 9amsix days later. 

October 4 

The water treatment plants in Semenyih and Bukit Tampoi ceased operations at 4.30pm, leaving 274 areas in Petaling, Hulu Langat, Kuala Langat and Sepang without water. The cause was attributed to odour pollution said to have originated from the Nilai Industrial Estate in Negri Sembilan, which entered Sungai Semenyih from Sungai Batang Benar. Sungai Semenyih resumed operations on October 6, followed by Bukit Tampoi the following day, with water supply restored in stages within the next 24 hours.

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