A 10-hour long water disruption across Selangor was originally scheduled on 6 March to allow critical repair works at the Sungai Selangor Water Supply Scheme Phase 3 (SSP3) water treatment plant
The ordeal led to many Selangorians complaining about the frequency of water disruptions in the state
According to The Sun Daily, the water disruption caused great inconvenience especially to senior citizens.
69-year-old Mak Tom was fed up with the frequent water disruption as it was a big burden to her as a senior citizen with knee problems.
"I kept water as advised... But when the plant broke down, the water supply cut has been extended and now I have to carry water," she told Bernama.
Another resident, Mazila Mat Nasir told Bernama that she had to carry water six times everyday from the Air Selangor tanker to her first-floor apartment.
In light of the water disruption, a few parties have been named to be held accountable for the inconvenience caused to Selangorians
Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali has been accused of being silent over the water crisis, while Subang Jaya assemblyman Hannah Yeoh also put the blame on Syarikat Pengeluar Air Sungai Selangor Sdn Bhd (Splash) for failure in maintenance of the water treatment plant.
Furthermore, New Straits Times reported that a viral message surfaced claiming the water disruption was an act of sabotage by the federal government. This was later debunked by the Energy, Green Technology and Water Ministry (KeTTHA)'s secretary-general Datuk Seri Dr Zaini Ujang.
According to Zaini, the real reason behind Selangor's water problems is that the state has been suffering from low water reserve margin
"The water reserve margin in Selangor in 2017 was at zero percent," Zaini said.
Sin Chew Daily reported that this means the state's daily quota for clean water supply is always used up, which leaves barely anything for the water reserve.
"In the event of a burst pipe, damaged water treatment plant or sudden increase in water demand... there is a high possibility that certain areas in Selangor would experience water disruptions," Zaini added.
According to Sin Chew Daily, this was also pointed out in the Malaysia Water Industry Guide (MWIG) 2017 report.
For two years in a row, Kedah and Selangor had 0% in water reserve margin. Penang has the highest margin of over 30%, followed by Perak and Labuan at just under 30%.
Zaini also stated that the ideal water reserve margin of a state should be at least 10% to brace for possible water disruptions.
A report by Utusan Malaysia also claimed that Selangor's water supply system has been operating at the maximum level
The report also showed that Selangor has the highest number of recorded issues with its water supply in 2015 and 2016 across the country.
In 2016, Selangor had over 80,000 cases of water supply issues, which is almost half of the nation's 160,000 recorded water supply issues.
Moreover, there were also nearly 260,000 complaints regarding water disruptions in Selangor, contrasting Penang's 3,778 and Pahang's 2,249.
Later on, Zaini offered a few solutions to Selangor's water crisis
He proposed building new water treatment plants, as well as reducing the state's loss of non-revenue water from the present 32% to national target of 25%.
"The final mechanism is by reducing the use of water per capita in the state, which stands at 234 litres per capita daily, to the national average of 209 litres per capita daily," Zaini added.