SPAN to ensure water supply operators replace problematic pipes

THE National Water Services Commission (SPAN) will ensure that water supply operators replace problematic pipes as scheduled to prevent incidents of leaking or burst pipes which cause water supply disruptions to consumers.

SPAN said it is closely monitoring the planning of each water supply operator on approved pipe replacement projects in each state, including Selangor, to improve the quality of service to consumers.

“The pipe replacement programme is one of the aspects that SPAN focuses on all the business plans of water supply operators,” it said in a statement today.

The statement was issued over the incident of water supply disruption in 58 areas around Shah Alam, Klang and Petaling which was due to a problem with the main pipe belonging to Pengurusan Air Selangor Sdn Bhd (Air Selangor) yesterday.

For the record, SPAN said it had since November approved the business plan submitted by Air Selangor which also listed a pipe replacement programme amounting to more than RM500 mil which will be implemented by Air Selangor and Pengurusan Aset Air Bhd (PAAB).

“The planned pipe replacement programme will be implemented in stages over three years from 2020 to 2022, involving the replacement of about 150 km of distribution pipelines per year and 4,260 connecting pipes,” it said.

The commission said the total length of asbestos cement (AC) pipes still in used in the distribution systems in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya was around 6,205 km or 21.4% of the total length of the distribution pipelines of 29,044 km.

“The pipe replacement programme is for pipes that have reached the maximum service life is something that is planned on a regular basis by each water supply operator.

“This is because these pipes are at great risk of leakage or bursting which will cause water supply disruption to consumers and at the same time contribute to the high rate of non-revenue water (NRW),” it said.

According to SPAN, the activity of replacing pipes by operators would take time and would be carried out in stages to avoid large-scale supply disruptions.

“In this regard, the understanding and patience of consumers is very much appreciated,” SPAN added.

Meanwhile, SPAN said the government is targeting to achieve 25% NRW by 2030.

Based on current records, the national NRW up to the second quarter of 2020 was 36.9% and the estimated loss due to NRW is around RM2 bil a year.

SPAN will continue to monitor the activities of operators based on the approval given for development plans and improvements to the quality of service so that the needs of consumers will receive priority.

The public is also asked to use water prudently and report cases of suspected water supply theft as well as any activities that could contaminate water resources to the SPAN Enforcement Division at + 603-8317 9333 or email to [email protected] – Dec 30, 2020

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