Just a week ago, there was a burst pipe in Jalan Sierramas Barat, Sungai Buloh. This required emergency repairs for major water piping.
This water disruption lasted some 48 to 72 hours in the Klang Valley which is in the heart of the nation.
More than 280 areas in Kuala Lumpur, Petaling, Klang and Shah Alam were seriously affected.
It riled up than a million users in households, business premises, restaurants and factories.
There are some hard questions which urgently need to be asked – especially when heated emotions were pouring out in the social media.
Will the government, water authorities, think tanks and citizens learn some vital lessons from this “ACT OF GOD”?
* HOME CONSUMERS. Access to uninterrupted clean water for homes, flats and apartments is the right of every citizen. Most homes have water tanks which provide a limited buffer of 1 to 2 days of family usage.
* RESTAURANTS. Access to uninterrupted clean water for restaurants and eateries is crucial. Food hygiene is of utmost importance for the health of consumers.
* INDUSTRIES AND FACTORIES. Any disruption to water supply would cause a halt in businesses’ and factories’ operations. Thus uninterrupted water supply is mission critical and cannot be taken for granted.
* WATCHDOG AUDITOR. How are we managing our river resources, water purification facilities, water treatment plants and pumping stations? Who audits the water authorities who monopolizes the processes? The state of Selangor alone have three water authorities, namely Syabas, Puas and Splash.
* WATER SECURITY. Is our water collection from the rivers and distribution network vulnerable to a terrorist attack? Who has access to the data of our water supply grid and infrastructure?
* WEB TECHNOLOGY. What level of web technology are we incorporating into the processes? What is our level of readiness compared to the best practices of Singaporean, European and American water authorities?
* GRID NETWORK. How will the three water authorities in Selangor mutually support each other in the event of a water disaster? Taking it to a higher level – can backup plans for water supply from neighbouring states be implemented within 48 hours at any given notice?
* IN EVENT OF A WATER DISASTER. A water disaster is defined as a “large-scale” breakdown in water treatment plants or “poisoning” of our water resources by terrorists. During the Syrian civil war, water supply was shut down indefinitely after ISIS terrorists poured massive quantities of oil or petrol into the rivers.
An “ACT OF GOD” is designed to send a “WARNING FROM GOD”. To ignore this wake-up call – is to do so at our own peril.