Penang water company says on high alert after Sungai Muda drops below safe level

GEORGE TOWN, April 18 — The Penang Water Supply Corporation (PBAPP) is on high alert after Sungai Muda measured at 1.61m at the Lahar Tiang intake yesterday, which is below the two-metre safe level.

PBAPP CEO K. Pathmanathan said PBAPP still managed to abstract about 1,200 million litres per day (MLD) from the river to support optimal treated water production at the Sungai Dua Water Treatment Plant (WTP).

“As of today, there is no immediate threat to water supply in Penang in relation to the Sungai Muda river level,” he said in a statement today.

He said this is because Syarikat Air Darul Aman Sdn Bhd (SADA) yesterday announced that Lembaga Sumber Air Negeri Kedah (LSANK) and Pejabat Lembangan Sungai Muda (PLSM) have increased the volume of water released from the Beris Dam into Sungai Muda, from 864 MLD (10 cumec) to 1,296 MLD (15 cumec).

Additionally, he said PBAPP may draw down on a maximum of 600 MLD from the expanded Mengkuang Dam (EMD) if it is not able to abstract sufficient raw water from Sungai Muda.

The effective capacity of Mengkuang Dam was 89.7 per cent yesterday.

He said the EMD serves as a back-up dry weather resource which may be tapped if PBAPP cannot abstract sufficient water from Sungai Muda.

Currently, PBAPP abstracts 1,200 MLD from Sungai Muda at the Sungai Dua WTP to produce about 85 per cent of the treated water in Penang daily.

He said the maximum drawdown capacity from the EMD is 600 MLD, or about 50 per cent of the raw water required by the Sungai Dua WTP to operate optimally.

“As such, so long as PBAPP is able to abstract 600 MLD of raw water from Sungai Muda and draw down 600 MLD from the EMD, there should be no unscheduled water supply interruption in Penang,” he said.

However, he said PBAPP will still be on high alert because Sungai Muda is Penang’s primary raw water resource.

He said they will continue to monitor the river level carefully and provide public updates as and when the Sungai Muda level improves or worsens.

Source: Malay Mail


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