KUCHING: Sarawak Public Works Department (PWD) knows how to augment the existing water supply system to overcome inadequate water supply and low water pressure issues affecting areas along Kuching-Serian Road.
Its Kuching divisional engineer Awang Mohammad Fadillah Awang Redzuan said PWD’s plans, conceived sometime in 2004, was divided into immediate, short-term and long-term categories.
“The immediate urgent works proposed, which also form part of the long term solution, comprise installing a two MLD (millions litres per day) mobile plant at Sg. Serin intake to cater to areas from Mile 24 to Mile 26 along the old Kuching-Serian Road.
“The project has been approved and work will start next month. Installation work will take three months,” said Awang Mohammad Fadillah when contacted yesterday. He was responding to Tarat assemblyman Datuk Roland Sagah Wee Inn’s frustration with the low water pressure and water shortage in recent years.
“PWD acknowledges the low volume and inconsistent water supply, especially to high ground areas in Siburan and the surrounding area. We have received frequent complaints of low water pressure and water supply interruptions from consumers in the area.
“For the last seven years, Tapah/Beratok/Siburan areas had experienced rapid growth with the development of large scale housing and commercial estates, which resulted in water demand significantly increased from 6,029 meter connections in 2006 to 10,000 metre connections at the end of 2014,” said Awang Mohammad Fadillah.
He added that presently the Tapah water treatment plant, with a design capacity of 12 MLD, is operating at an overloaded capacity of 15 MLD to supply treated water to Tapah/Betatok/Siburan areas.
“The water production is inadequate to meet the demand from the large scale housing and commercial estates. There are two major sources of raw water supply for the treatment plans – Sg Tapah and Sg Serin. The estimated non-revenue water (NRW) is 38 per cent of the plant production capacity.”
Apart from the installation of a mobile plant at Sg Serin intake, Awang Mohammad Fadillah said a new five MLD package water treatment plant would be constructed to supply water for areas along new Kuching-Serian Road.
He added that the project had been approved and tender would be called next month by the Ministry of Rural and Regional Development. Construction period would be eight months.
As a long term measure to supply consistent water to all consumers in Siburan, Tapah and Beratok areas up to the year 2030 and beyond, Awang Mohammad Fadillah said PWD had proposed for the construction of Kuching-Serian Road Watermains (Phase 1).
He said the proposal had been approved and tender would be called this coming July. The construction period will be 18 months.
“The scope of work for the project will be laying of 800 mm and mild steel cement lining (MSCL) from Mile 15 to the new booster station at Mile 18 and constructing a new 2.2 million litres booster station at Mile 18.
“Besides that, the project will include refurbishing existing reinforced concrete (RC) reservoirs at Bukit Bukah and Bukit Iring. The project has been approved and tender would be called on July 2015. The construction duration would be 18 months.”
Awang Mohammad Fadillah said the renewal of aging Asbestos cement (AC) pipes at Siburan-Tapah-Beratok was ongoing at various locations in the areas to reduce NRW.