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Saturday, August 31, 2013

The cause of Klang Valley’s water woes, an illegal factory in Rawang

Workers checking the situation at the Sungai Selangor Phase I plant. The Malaysian Insider pic by Nazir Sufari.  Workers checking the situation at the Sungai Selangor Phase I plant. The Malaysian Insider pic by Nazir Sufari.
The Selangor government has shut down a factory believed to be the source of a diesel spill which contaminated a river and caused the shutdown of four treatment plants that supplied water to more than a million consumers in the Klang Valley.
A joint team comprising personnel from the Selayang Municipal Council, Selangor Department of Environment and the police raided the factory which was found to be operating without a permit.
"The factory had been issued 14 compounds totalling RM34,000 for a variety of offences," The Star Online quoted Selayang council president Mohd Azizi Mohd Zain as saying.
The factory is about 500 metres from the AEON hypermarket, close to an upmarket residential area in Rawang.
The council closed the factory in Jalan Batu Arang several months ago after residents complained of a stench emanating from it.
However, the owner continued operations.
The Star Online said the factory was carrying out heavy industrial activities, including collecting waste oil and reprocessing it.
"They were caught while discharging the waste oil from two lorry tankers owned by the factory," Mohd Azizi said.
This time, the council sealed the factory. Officers will also be posted there to ensure that it doesn't resume operations.
The factory was also found to be manufacturing roll-on/roll-off containers and compactors, The Star reported.
In a statement last night, Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor Sdn Bhd (Syabas) said over one million consumers in seven districts in Selangor might have to go without water for days due to the closure of the Sungai Selangor Phase 1, 2 and 3 and Rantau Panjang treatment plants to facilitate clean-up work.
The districts affected were Petaling, Kuala Lumpur, Klang/Shah Alam, Gombak, Hulu Selangor, Kuala Langat and Kuala Selangor.
However, today Selangor state exco member Elizabeth Wong lashed out at the water concessionaire for "creating panic among the public" over the diesel spillage at Sungai Selangor which resulted in massive water supply disruptions in the Klang Valley.
"Syabas need not have issued a statement to create furore and trigger panic. Furthermore, the source of the spillage is not as being claimed by the company," Wong told The Malaysian Insider today.
She said the four plants shut down following the diesel spill started operating again at 4am today and were at full capacity by 6am.
"The reservoirs are beginning to fill up," she assured millions of consumers today in the wake of Syabas activating its emergency response plan to deal with the major disruption of supply.
She promised action against the errant factory.

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