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Water tank comes crashing
Published on: Thursday, June 14, 2018

Kota Kinabalu: City Hall has no specific By-Law to curb the practice of placing water tanks on the top of buildings, according to City Hall Director-General Datuk Joannes Solidau. He said that normally they issue notices to building owners for illegal structures under the Building By-Laws.

He was commenting on a water tank which collapsed in Sinsuran on Wednesday, resulting in a Perodua Kancil parked below being badly damaged. The extent of the damage suggests it could have been fatal if a person had the misfortune of being at the spot when it happened.

The several hundred gallons water tank appeared to have fallen from one of the upper floors of the shop lots before landing on the car.

"This tank is considered as illegal structure. But of course, the building owners argue that they have no choice since water supply is a problem," he said.

He noted that it is quite common to see water tanks being placed on building canopies in the State capital.

"What we can do is to issue notice/advice building owners to remove the water tanks.

"But if they don't comply then it's a long process to bring them to court," he said, adding that in the Sinsuran incident, the car owner will have to deal with the building owner for compensation or payment of insurance.

Meanwhile, City Police Chief ACP M. Chandra in a statement said the incident occurred at a parking space of the night market area not far from a hotel here.

A police team went to the area to inspect after being alerted by the public at about 12.01pm to find the badly damaged vehicle parked near a water tank which had fallen from the first floor of the shoplot.

Preliminary inspections showed that the water tank belonged to a nearby restaurant and that the restaurant manager only realised what had happened at about 10.30am before lodging a report at about 2.47pm.

He said further investigation found that the water tank is of plastic type and can accommodate 400 litres of water.

During the incident, it was believed that there was about 200 litres of water inside the tank and the cause of the incident was believed to have been caused by the decayed plywood which was used as a retainer.

The water tank was also found to have been placed at the corner of the building with no security barrier.

Chandra said nobody was inside the vehicle when the incident took place.

The vehicle owner and the restaurant manager settled the matter amicably with the manager agreeing to compensate.

Daily Express had previously reported about the danger of some buildings, especially those built using sea sand or very old, buckling under the weight of the heavily laden water tanks, especially if there are many of these placed at the top of these buildings. - Sherell Jeffrey


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