The sudden drop in water pressure after the shutting down of Penang’s largest water treatment plant has send Penangities scrambling out in panic and stocking up drinking water.
According to images and videos that went viral on social media, shelves and racks of water in sundry shops, supermarkets and even shopping malls were being cleared and carted out, leading to congestion at some major outlets.
Many netizens also took to social media to voice their concerns, with some saying that the panic buys also happened in parts of Kedah.
The panic buy started after the state government issued a notice warning against water disruption in Penang due to the closure of the Sungai Dua water treatment plant.
It is reported that the plant had to cease operations for 4 hours following the floods in Baling, Kedah as the raw water from Sungai Muda is too muddy.
Meanwhile, the Penang Water Supply Corporation (PBAPP) said it will be drawing raw water from the Mengkuang Dam for the use of the people of the state.
Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said that the raw water from the Mengkuang Dam could accommodate the use of the people of Penang for 100 days.
He also explained that the dam functions as a water storage dam if faced with an unusual situation like now, namely the supply of raw water is disrupted.
Flood in Baling
On Monday (4 July), over 300 residents from 8 villages in Baling, Kedah evacuated to several relief centres (PPS) after a flash flood landed in the area during the wee hours.
Following the floods, residents in the surrounding area were reported to have protested a reservoir pool project at the top of Gunung Inas, which was said to have burst and resulted in headwaters and mud floods that flowed into Sungai Lata Celak, Kampung Iboi.
Sanusi ni wakil rakyat ke wakil kapitalis durian? Rakyat Kedah meninggal sebab banjir taw https://t.co/2LpMgo1l72— Bayhaki (@BayhakiSD) July 6, 2022
The pond is also said to have been built by a company involved in the Musang King durian planting project in 2018, where it is used to water between 4,000 to 5,000 durian trees in the area.
However, Kedah Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor denied the allegations that the Musang King durian planting project in Gunung Inas was the cause of floods.
He also said he did not want to be involved in the ‘blame game’ played by some parties, especially in matters involving tragedies or natural disasters.