Dry spell and heatwave affecting Johor water treatment plants, two near critical levels

The Lebam dam in Johor Baru, in a photo taken in April 2016. The dam has dipped below its critical point, although its plant is still operating normally.
The Lebam dam in Johor Baru, in a photo taken in April 2016. The dam has dipped below its critical point, although its plant is still operating normally.PHOTO: SIN CHEW DAILY/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

JOHOR BARU - Water levels at several treatment plants in Johor have fallen because of the ongoing dry spell and high temperatures and two are close critical thresholds, a state official said.

State International Trade, Investment and Utilities Committee chairman Jimmy Puah Wee Tse said the hot weather has caused a significant decline in the raw water supply. He added that this could lead to several water treatment plants failing to operate normally.

"The water intake of the Lok Heng treatment plant in Kota Tinggi has dropped significantly on Tuesday (Aug 13) with a 0.93m reading compared to its normal 2.76m reading," he said.

"The water level at Sungai Sedili Kecil, which is the main raw water source for the (Lok Heng) treatment plant has also been declining since two weeks ago," Puah added in a statement on Wednesday (Aug 14).

"A request to carry out a scheduled water supply programme has been sent to the National Water Services Commission (Span) for approval," he said.

Puah said that water operator Ranhil SAJ has suggested a scheduled water supply programme for affected areas to ensure that the treatment plant can operate normally.

He added that the Lok Heng water treatment plant supplies treated water to some 4,000 accounts from the Felda Bukit Waha, Felda Bukit Easter, Felda Simpang Waha, Felda Lok Heng Barat, Felda Lok Heng Timur, Felda Lok Heng Selatan and Bukit Tentera areas.

The state executive councillor also said the Lebam dam in Kota Tinggi has also dipped below its critical point, although its plant is still operating normally.

"In Muar, the dry spell is causing the water intake along Sungai Muar to reach its critical level with the Bukit Serampang plant experiencing the worst intake.

 
 

"Several rivers in Segamat and the Gunong Pulai dam in Pontian are also experiencing the same situation," he said.

These rivers and the dam supply drinking water to Pontian as well as to certain parts of Johor Baru.

Puah also urged the public to use water prudently to ensure that there would be enough water for everyone without any disturbance.

"The state government and Ranhill SAJ are currently monitoring the situation closely with the help of other relevant agencies," he said.