Breakdown of water pumps add to Membakut woes
Published on: Tuesday, June 30, 2020
By: Sidney Skinner
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The raw water intake for this treatment plant in Membakut was flooded.
Kota Kinabalu: The breakdown of two water pumps, servicing part of Membakut, contributed to the supply woes which some 30 per cent of consumers there have been experiencing since Sunday. 

A Department spokesman said the mechanisms inside the devices, at the older of the two treatment plants for the district, burnt out due to the inclement weather which hit the State 

He said the main raw-water intake for the plant was flooded as a result of the heavy rains.

He said this gave rise to the high-turbidity of the water going into the plant.

“We managed to borrow a pump from our peers in Tenom for use at the facility,” he said on June 28.

“The device is of a smaller capacity. We are in the process of trying to modify it so that it can temporarily stand-in for either of the pumps which failed.”

He said the latter were being repaired at a workshop.

“In the meantime, we will have supplies delivered, via tanker, to the affected consumers.

“The district has one such vehicle with a capacity of 10,000 litres, but we have also secured the use of another from our Papar branch with a similar capacity for the time being.” 

The spokesman estimated that that the Department’s customer-base in the district was about 25,000 strong.

“About 70 per cent of this number can still receive tap water as their supply is drawn from the newer treatment plant.

“Under normal circumstances, this facility produces more than 11 million litres of water daily (MLD), while about six MLD is generated from its older counterpart.”

He said the Department was keeping an eye on the situation and hoped to restore a normal supply to the public there as soon as possible.

BAKLI, who lives above some shops in Membakut bemoaned the inconvenience caused by the lack of water in his first floor-floor apartment.

“The water in our storage tank is almost depleted,” he said, adding that the taps in her unit had run dry for the past few days.

“We have taken to drinking bottled water and not taking our meals at home because of this.”

On the third day, he and his family were forced to put up at a relative’s house in another part of the district.

“We could not use the toilets in our apartment and my two young children had not bathed properly in the days.

Bakli said he initially reported these water woes to unit-owner only to be redirected to the Department.

“The staff who answered my call informed me that the problem was a result of the low water pressure in the distribution mains. However, this individual was unable to tell me when the situation would return to normal.”


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