All areas drought-free except Simunjan
by Lian Cheng, email@example.com. Posted on August 9, 2012, Thursday
KUCHING: Except for Simunjan the rest of the drought affected areas in Sarawak are now free from water shortage.
“The drought affected Sarawak from middle of June until July 9. Except Simunjan, all areas have returned to normal operation by July 10,” said a spokesman of the state Public Works Department.
The drought affected areas included Bau, Simunjan, Sebangan, Lubok Antu, Skrang, Lingga, Stumbia Bijat, Beladin, Pulau Bruit, Lawas and Suai.
During the height of the drought, JKR had sent water by tankers once or twice a day to the affected areas. In some areas, water was sent once every three days to fill holding tanks in the affected villages.
The department is uncertain whether the dry spell will come again but it has estimated that RM500,000 would be spent by the end of the drought operation to send water to the affected areas.
In tackling the drought problem, Kuching Water Board is in the midst of increasing the flap of the weir by another one metre to further increase the safe yield of Sungai Sarawak Kiri.
The project which is now in progress is to cost about RM900,000.
It is an upgrade to the RM10.5 million weir which was installed in 2005 to prevent saline water intrusion, apart from increasing the yield of Sungai Sarawak Kiri.
KWB said in the June to July drought season, it had received requests to send water to five villages. The villages were Kpg Segobang, Jalan Saksan, Jalan Pangkalan Baru, Kpg Sg Tapang and Kpg Git.
For Sibu Water Board, which has a maintenance budget for sending water tankers during water interruption, it had received requests for sending water tankers to longhouses and oil palm plantations which did not have any treated water supply.
Permanent secretary to the Public Utilities Ministry, Ubaidillah Latip meanwhile said that for a month now, there had been no request for water delivery.
“As the dry season is not over yet, we are not sure if it will come back again. But all tankers are on stand-by to send water whenever there is request,” said Ubaidillah