Residents of the Build-to-Order (BTO) project in Bukit Panjang were hit by their second water supply disruption in just three months. This time, the outage lasted for three hours on Sunday, March 19, leaving residents frustrated and inconvenienced. It is the second water supply disruption since they moved in about a year ago.
The town council has identified an electrical fault as the cause of the outage. An electrical trip caused by a ruptured sanitary gasket at the control valve led to water seeping into the electrical distribution board. As a safety feature, the power supply to the water pumps at the block was disconnected.
Most of the affected residents felt frustrated or inconvenienced by the disruption. Out of the 10 residents interviewed, seven indicated that this was not the first time that a water disruption had occurred in their block.
Residents recalled going downstairs to collect water using pails, or observing their neighbors doing so. Housewife Connie Ong, 48, had her cooking plans affected, and others sent pictures via Telegram of bottles of water that they had purchased.
A resident named Ms. Lim recounted the tap turning off when her daughter was having a shower. She had to get drinking water to help her finish the shower. This was either Chinese New Year day one or two, so after visiting, they went to her auntie’s house. They were lucky that her auntie lives nearby.
Mr. Edward Chia, MP for Holland-Bukit Timah Group Representation Constituency’s Zhenghua ward, said, “Of course, this is absolutely unacceptable, and we are pursuing the matter with HDB and the contractors involved.”
However, he emphasized that the two incidents, in January and last Sunday, were unrelated, and he does not want to cause panic among residents. “The incident in January was due to human negligence,” he said. “Someone switched the water tank from auto to manual, so the tank did not fill up when it was depleted.”