Water woe at basement of Sembulan shopping centre
Published on: Thursday, December 03, 2020
By: Sidney Skinner
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City Hall staff and the MC personnel for this Luyang shopping centre check on the pipes above the basement parking.
CITY Hall will check on the condition of the gutters for a Sembulan commercial centre, following a complaint from a Likas motorist about the water which collects at the parking lots beneath the building during a downpour.

The driver almost slipped and fell while trying to walk through the basement to an adjoining shopping centre on a recent weekday.

JAYE of Likas said the run-off collected in sections of the basement for the commercial centre.

The senior citizen, in his 60’s, said this made the area around the parking lots slippery. 

“I suspect that the ponding problem has been happening for some time as I noticed patches of fungus on the floor,” he said. 

He admitted that it had been raining at the time that he went to the commercial centre.

“Even so, I couldn’t figure out how the run-off was getting in as I did not see or hear any water rushing into the basement.

“I think this might be a case of damaged gutters or a leaking pipe from the upper floors.” 

Thankfully, he had not been alone when he went to the centre, according to him.

“The friend, who I was with, grabbed me when I lost my balance. If not for his quick reflexes, I would have surely lost my balance and fallen on my back.”

Jaye feared that others might not be so lucky.

“I hate to imagine what might happen if someone with a limp or an expectant mum were to slip while walking through the basement.” 

He hoped the local authorities would take steps to improve the maintenance of the gutters and drains around the building.

Jaye said action needed be taken to prevent the basement from getting unnecessarily wet.

“The relevant parties should also consider having a layer of ‘epoxy paint’ applied to the floor for the underground parking.

“This will prevent fungus from forming on the floor and provide a non-slip surface.”

The driver provided Hotline with the location of the commercial centre in question, which was forwarded to City Hall.

A spokesman for the agency said its staff would have to verify the driver’s claim.

The water ponding at the basement parking lots in this Sembulan commercial centre is hazardous to pedestrians.


“The public areas around the building, including the floors in the basement, are not maintained by City Hall,” he said.

“Should his concern about the safety hazards be warranted, we will have a word with the management company (MC) for the centre.”

He said the firm would be asked to address the irregularities involving the water pooling around the underground parking lots.

“The company will also be asked to step up efforts to deal with the mould which has formed on the basement floor.” 

Earlier this year, City Hall called on the MC for a Luyang shopping centre to ensure that regular maintenance was carried out on the pipes which are elevated over the parking spaces in the basement of the building along the Lintas-Kolombong Ring Road.

This action was prompted after a Papar driver found traces of a stinking fluid all over the body of his car which he had left beneath the commercial property. 

The individual suspected that that this substance might have been sewage as he detected a strong ammonia-like smell about it.

He feared that the spatter might have come from a leak in the pipe above his vehicle.

The individual provided Hotline with the location of the parking bay which he occupied at the time, as well as the time and date of the incident. This information was forwarded to the agency.

The spokesman said a City Hall officer inspected the basement parking lots together with the MC staff a day after the agency became aware of this problem. 

“The pipe above the space where the driver had left his car was not conducting sewage,” he said.

“It was instead channelling away the soiled water and unwanted fluids from the kitchen for an eatery above.

“The pipe seemed to be visibly intact and was not damaged.”

He said a check was also made of the sprinkler system in the basement. This too was in order, according to him.

“Nevertheless, the management was urged to be more mindful of the condition of the pipes running above the parking lots here.

“We advised the company to address any irregularities involving these structures as soon as possible so that motorists were not unduly inconvenienced by any leaks, be they water or other substances.”

JEROME of Papar said he did not sense anything amiss when he drove into the underground parking for the shopping centre that Wednesday afternoon.

“The floor of the parking lot was dry when I alighted from my car,” he said.

He returned an hour later to find that his vehicle and the floor around it was wet.

“I held my nose as the fluid reminded me of waste water from the toilet. I looked up at what might have caused the spatter and saw a pipe running above the top of my car.”

He said this led him to believe that the pipe might be part of the sewerage for the building.

“I made my way to the nearest car wash after I left the shopping centre. Effluent is by nature corrosive and I feared that it might eat into the body my car, if I did not have my vehicle hosed off as soon as possible.” 


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