KUCHING: Some water treatment plants, which were temporarily affected in the past week, have resumed operations, says Assistant Utilities (Water Supply) Minister Datuk Dr Abdul Rahman Junaidi.
He told New Sarawak Tribune that the plants were mainly affected by disruption of power supply.
He added that raw and treated water samples were taken regularly by water supply agencies for testing.
“The raw water quality needs to comply with the National Water Quality Standards for Malaysia issued by the Department of Environment (DoE) while the treated water quality needs to comply with the National Standard for Drinking Water Quality issued by the Ministry of Health (MoH),” he said last Sunday.
Water supply agencies would monitor both the raw and treated water quality to ensure that the treated water supplied to the consumers is safe for public consumption, he added.
At the same time, water supply agencies in the state are fully prepared for the worst.
Sarawak Rural Water Supply Department (JBALB) Corporate Communications and Customer Service assistant director Awang Fardillah Awang Hussin said three water treatment plants were affected by floods in past few days, namely Sg Serin Water Treatment Plant in Kuching Division, and Simunjan Water Treatment Plant and Sebuyau Water Treatment Plant in Samarahan Division.
“Due to this, water supply to consumers in Simunjan and Sebuyau areas was disrupted. However, all three plants have resumed operations last Friday and monitoring works are done as usual in case the river water level rises.”
He assured that water supply operations had returned to normal and the headquarters had even instructed every divisional water engineers to submit daily reports in the event of rising water level or floods.
“If the situation worsens, the divisional JBALB will be instructed to open Bilik Gerakan Bencana (disaster operations room) to monitor the situation effectively.”
He added that the dosage of chlorine used to treat water would be slightly increased as a bactericidal and disinfectant process. This is to ensure that the water supplied to consumers is in accordance with the quality standards set.
For areas where water supply is cut off due to floods, clean water supply delivery is also done.
On problems such as pipe leaks, JBALB will immediately conduct repair works after the flood situation recovers.
Fardillah also said the department was always prepared to ensure that the operations of water treatment plants throughout the state is in good condition and close monitoring was always done.
Despite Kuching being hit by floods, water treatment plants under the jurisdiction of Kuching Water Board (KWB) remain unaffected. This was confirmed by a KWB spokesperson when contacted last Sunday.
Sibu Water Board (SWB) manager (Information Technology & Corporate) Lawrence Ling said their water treatment plants were unaffected during floods due to its water sourced from the Rejang River.
“Our water supply doesn’t have any issue so far and we still maintain our water quality as usual.”
Under SWB, Bukit Lima Water Treatment Plant is operating at around 44 to 47 million litres daily (MLD) while Salim Water Treatment Plant is around 122 to 124 MLD.
Laku Management Sdn Bhd also did not record any water supply interruption or pollution in Miri, Limbang and Bintulu due to rain or floods.
In Limbang specifically, Laku Limbang operations executive Rex Chua Chung Cheak said there were no floods at its water intakes namely Sg Pandaruan and Sg Berawan.
“Limbang water supply still operates as usual. We have daily water sampling in place to check and ensure the treated water meets the National Drinking Water Standard.
“Our Berawan Water Treatment Plant is currently under upgrading works which is expected to reach completion by end of this month. Upon completion, the plant capacity will increase from 20 MLD to 40 MLD to cater to the water demand in Limbang area.”