There's Poison In The Water And Malaysians Are Suffering From The Resulting Crisis

About one million residents in Selangor are affected.

  • Cover image via SAYS

News of contamination at a water treatment plant is making residents in Selangor uneasy as some of them are going into the fifth day without any water supply

Image via Bernama

It was reported that the operation of the Sungai Semenyih water treatment plant was temporarily halted due to odour pollution detected in the Semenyih River since 23 October.

The plant had to be shut down for the same reason just one month ago.

About one million residents in Selangor are affected by this water crisis and it's a worrying trend

Image via Wong Chen

The current water crisis is affecting consumers from the Sepang, Kuala Langat, Hulu Langat and Petaling districts.

The people of Selangor are extremely unhappy and worried after experiencing too many water shortages and contaminations this year alone, and the recent water interruption has once again irked many residents who were affected.

Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor (Syabas) revealed in a statement yesterday, 27 October, that several areas in USJ, Subang Jaya, Bandar Puteri Puchong and Puchong have been experiencing water disruptions since 24 October following a 30-hour shutdown of the Semenyih water treatment plant "due to odour pollution" in Sungai Buah in Nilai, Negeri Sembilan which flows into Sungai Semenyih.

To make matters worse, a recent test revealed that samples from Sungai Buah contained poison

According to Selangor Tourism, Environment, Green Technology and Consumer Affairs Executive Councillor Elizabeth Wong water samples taken from the river, which flows into the Sungai Semenyih Water Treatment Plant, contains the toxic 4-bromodiphenyl ether, a flame retardant that is "very poisonous". She also reportedly said that dead fish were also found in the water where the samples were taken.

"The water samples emit an unpleasant odour with a Threshold Odour Number (TON) of four, which means the water must be treated,” Wong was quoted as saying by NST.

"Presently, the water is being pumped out into retention ponds to prevent it from contaminating the water supply for public use."

Pollution level of the river remains critical and she reportedly said that Selangor state government had asked the Negeri Sembilan Department of Environment to help pump out the polluted water.

What is causing the pollution at Sungai Buah?

PKR's Kelana Jaya MP Wong Chen claims that irresponsible companies are trying to take the cheaper way out in the disposal of toxic substances by dumping them into the river.

"I am of the view that with the economy slowing, more and more companies will try to cut costs by dumping pollution straight into the river," he wrote on his official Facebook page yesterday, 27 October.

"Enforcement in Malaysia has always been a challenge. A widely held view is the enforcement officers are either stretched thin, overworked or at the other end of the spectrum, just plain corrupt being paid by polluters to turn a blind eye."

"We need to bring in the accountants. We need all factories in Selangor to disclose their waste inventory. And we need to catch the culprits, severely punish them to end this cycle of water cuts," he said.

Residents in Selangor may finally breathe a sigh of relief as water supply is being restored in stages, ahead of the Deepavali celebrations tomorrow

Image via Wong Chen

Subang Jaya MP Hannah Yeoh said in a Facebook post that water supply has resumed for most parts of USJ today, 28 October.

"Some parts of USJ 3/1, USJ 4/1, USJ 5/1, USJ 11/4 and USJ 12/2 have yet to receive supply. Tankers will be sent out to these areas. Pushing Syabas to help with full recovery today because tomorrow is Deepavali. Thank you to everyone who helped with tankers distribution till 2:30am this morning." she wrote.

Syabas has also said that water supply to USJ and Bandar Puteri Puchong areas will be fully restored by 29 October (tomorrow).

Those who wish to receive more updates from Syabas can use the “mySYABAS” mobile application, or visit their website at ww.syabas.com.my.

Were you affected by the recent water crisis? Share with us your experience in the comments section below.

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