Red water in Jurong West canal is 'organic solvent and dye'

Water in the canal at Jurong West St 62 turned red on Sunday afternoon.
Water in the canal at Jurong West St 62 turned red on Sunday afternoon. PHOTO: SHIN MIN DAILY NEWS
Water in the canal at Jurong West St 62 turned red on Sunday afternoon.
Water in the canal at Jurong West St 62 turned red on Sunday afternoon. PHOTO: LIANHE WANBAO

SINGAPORE - Reddish water found in a canal in Jurong West is "organic solvent and dye", water agency PUB told The Straits Times.

The water in a canal in Jurong West had turned red on Sunday (July 26), alarming some residents.

Residents living near Jurong West Street 62, which is near Boon Lay MRT station, reported the phenomenon at around 3pm on Sunday.

One of them was Ms Shahira. She told Stomp she was taking out the rubbish when she saw that "the water in the drain near Block 601 at Jurong West Street 62 was red in colour".

"It was really surprising to see such a sight. It was scary and quite a lot of people were looking at it too," she said.

Water agency PUB said it was informed of a "reddish discharge" in the canal along Jurong West Street 62 at 3.15pm on Sunday.

PUB officers who inspected the waterway at around 3.30pm noticed the reddish water flowing out from the covered roadside drain leading into the canal along Jurong West Street 62, near Jurong West Primary School.

Sandbags were immediately placed in the drain to contain the discharge and prevent it from flowing downstream, PUB said.

PUB, together with the National Environment Agency (NEA), traced the source upstream to the perimeter drain near HDB Block 650B, where reddish stains were found in the drain.

"Based on test results, the red discharge is likely to be organic solvent and dye. Common uses for organic solvents are in cleaning, paint, plastic industry," said a PUB spokesman on Monday.

NEA said that the cleanup of the canal is still ongoing. Lianhe Wanbao reported that the water in the canal was clear at 10am on Monday.

PUB also said that it along with NEA will not hesitate to take strict enforcement action against illegal discharge into public drains and canals.

Members of the public can report any pollution in the drains and canals by calling NEA's 24-hour call centre on 1800-CALL NEA (1800-2255-632) or PUB's 24-hour call centre on 1800-284 6600.

chuimin@sph.com.sg