18 Nov 2011, 2.50PM
The recent series of deaths at Bedok Reservoir has attracted much public attention and concern. REACH contributors, too, have expressed concern about the perceived lack of security at the reservoir, and its implications. Here, we bring you the reply from the Public Utilities Board (PUB) to the feedback received, to close the loop with contributors.
to view the discussion on REACH.
Reply from PUB is appended below for your information, please.
Since 2004, PUB has progressively opened up reservoirs for water sports and activities. By bringing Singaporeans closer to water, this also encourages them to cherish and better appreciate this precious resource. As safety of the reservoir user is paramount, only organised group activities and trainings conducted under the supervision and guidance from either the licensed operators, National Sports Associations, schools and grassroots organisations are allowed at the reservoirs. Safety measures such as warning signs, life buoys, safety barriers, lightning alert warning system and demarcation of water activity zones have been implemented to ensure the safety of public and water activity participants in and around the reservoirs. Water activity operators are also required to comply with stringent safety procedures, such as conducting safety briefings to participants, ensuring that participants put on personal flotation devices and ensuring all participants leave the reservoirs if lightning alert warning is received. The recent drowning cases at Bedok Reservoir are not due to or related to water activities.
Safety measures such as warning signs, life buoys, safety barriers, lightning alert warning system and demarcation of water activity zones have also been implemented in other reservoirs to ensure the safety of public and water activity participants in and around the reservoirs. All the reservoirs are also patrolled by PUB officers regularly.
In light of the recent incidents, PUB officers have stepped up patrols at Bedok Reservoir. We have also engaged the service of CISCO guards to conduct patrols at the reservoir to augment PUB’s patrol. In addition, we intends to put up signs showing helpline information at Bedok Reservoir and are in the midst of consulting the Samaritans of Singapore (SOS) and experts on the appropriate message to be displayed.
Notwithstanding this, PUB would like to urge the public to help us by alerting the Police or PUB immediately should they spot any person behaving suspiciously or in an unsafe manner at any of the reservoirs.
We would also like to assure readers that the recent incidents have no impact on the water quality. PUB monitors the quality of the reservoir water closely to ensure water in the reservoirs is of treatable quality at all times. The reservoir water is treated in water treatment works to a standard well within the World Health Organisation’s Guidelines for Drinking Water Standard before it is distributed for water supply. The treated water is also tested daily for many parameters including bacteriological quality to ensure it meets all drinking water quality guidelines. We will continue to rigorously test our treated waters to ensure it complies with all safety standards.
Mr Goh Chong Hoon
Catchment and Waterways Department