20,000 hit by dry taps due to damaged pipe
Published on: Tuesday, April 23, 2019

KOTA KINABALU: Some 20,000 water consumers were affected after a major Water Department transmission pipe along Kolombong bypass was damaged by a Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB) contractor.

State Water Department Director Amarjit Singh said the contractor did not refer to the department about the right-of-way (ROW) work they were doing at the site.

“I think they were doing some cabling work,” he told a press conference.

He said the 800mm pipe, which was three metres underground, supplies water from Moyog.

“The damage stopped the supply to our reservoir in Likas. It is from the reservoir that water is supplied to the whole of Inanam, along Jalan Tuaran, Damai, Luyang and Likas,” he said.

He said the pipe is under the custody of Jetama Sdn Bhd, which began repair work at 6pm on Sunday.

“They managed to repair the crack by installing a metal plate. We had hoped that would help. 

“Unfortunately, at 9am (Monday), we received news that the temporary repair gave way,” he said.

According to Amarjit, work was underway to further repair the damaged pipe and expected it to be completed today (Tuesday).

“Water supply will be gradually restored by afternoon,” he said.

In the meantime, he said the department has taken measures by diverting water supply from Telibong 2 and from City Mall to be distributed to the affected areas. 

Meanwhile, Daily Express Hotline received many complaints from readers about dry taps in their respective areas. 

A reader, who works at a Kolombong food manufacturing plant, wanted to know if there was a scheduled shutdown as the taps in the premises had run dry. 

At the time he contacted Hotline, he had been without tap water for more than 24 hours.

“We have been using the reserves in our water tank very sparingly but I would like to know when the supply is likely to be restored,” he said.

“I tried phoning the Department as soon as the problem first arose but all my calls have gone unanswered so far.”

He said this was not the first time that the plant had been without treated water.

“Since March, our supply woes have gradually been getting worse. 

“We have lost a substantial amount of business as manufacturing activities have to be halted whenever there is no water.

“To make matters worse, we have also had to shoulder the added expense of hiring a tanker to deliver a supply to the plant.”

Richie said his employer had done this on five occasions between March and April. 

Another Daily Express reader, who lives in Taman Nelly, bemoaned the lack of supply in her home for the past few days.

“We have been unable to use our kitchen or toilet,” she said 

She said this is not the first time she had had experienced this problem. 

“Most recently, we were without water at the beginning of the month.”

She said she had tried phoning the Department several times about the unreliable supply.

Both consumers provided Hotline with the times and dates of the water disruption. This information was forwarded to the agency. - Leonard Alaza and Sidney Skinner


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