PUB says water pollution at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park "not likely to be kerosene"

Park goers did not seem to notice anything wrong with the water. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO
Park goers did not seem to notice anything wrong with the water. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO
Park goers did not seem to notice anything wrong with the water. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO
Park goers did not seem to notice anything wrong with the water. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO
A thin layer of oil was still visible at a stretch of the river in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park near Bishan Road. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO
A thin layer of oil was still visible at a stretch of the river in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park near Bishan Road. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO
A thin layer of oil was still visible at a stretch of the river in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park near Bishan Road. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO
A thin layer of oil was still visible at a stretch of the river in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park near Bishan Road. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO
A thin layer of oil was still visible at a stretch of the river in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park near Bishan Road. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO
A thin layer of oil was still visible at a stretch of the river in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park near Bishan Road. -- ST PHOTO: YEO SAM JO

SINGAPORE - Authorities are investigating a case of water pollution at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park.

A Public Utilities Board (PUB) spokesman told The Straits Times the agency received a report of "oil sheen" on the Kallang River at the park at about 6pm on Tuesday.

Facebook user Alphonso Chan posted two pictures which showed the river covered in a coat of oily substance. He wrote: "I am upset. Who on earth poured kerosene in the Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park. Fishes are leaping out of the water for air."

Mr Chan told The Straits Times he was heading back to his Bishan home after 6pm when he smelled kerosene. "That is when I saw a layer of oil over the water. I could even smell (it) from my home on the 11th storey," he said.

However the PUB said that according to preliminary investigations, the sheen is "not likely to be kerosene" and dispersants have been applied to disperse the oil.

"On-site checks show no abnormality in the water quality and fish behaviour," she added. "Water samples have been collected for further testing and PUB will continue to monitor the situation closely. The rain this afternoon (Wednesday) has since diluted away any remnant oil."

When The Straits Times visited the park on Wednesday (Dec 17) afternoon, there was a thin, barely visible layer of oily substance on the stretch of the river close to Bishan Road, but the fish seemed to be swimming normally. Regular park goers also said that they did not notice any difference in the water.

Water in the Kallang River flows into the Marina Reservoir. But the PUB spokesman stressed that the water is safe.

She said: "PUB would like to assure the public that it has a comprehensive monitoring system to monitor the quality of the raw water in our reservoirs, and the raw water is treated at the waterworks to World Health Organization drinking water quality guidelines before it is supplied to households."

Members of the public with any feedback can call PUB's 24-hour call centre at 1800 284 6600.

yeosamjo@sph.com.sg