SINGAPORE: Residents at a Build-to-Order (BTO) project in Bukit Panjang suffered a three-hour water outage last Sunday (Mar 19), 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 but the Member of Parliament for the ward is pursuing the matter with the Housing and Development Board (HDB) and the BTO contractors.
When one of the residents, housewife Connie Ong, turned on the tap on Sunday at her Senja Ridges BTO unit, she found that the water flow had dried up.
“At first I thought that my husband had turned off the mains by accident,” said Ms Ong, 48.
She quickly discovered that this was a building-wide outage, corroborated by the messages on her block’s Telegram group chat.
The water disruption to residents at 638A Senja Close lasted from 11am to 2pm on Sunday.
Apart from water being unavailable for a period, residents also reported cloudy, yellowish and muddy water from 2pm until 6pm on Sunday before the service was fully restored.
The building experienced an electrical trip caused by a ruptured sanitary gasket at the control valve, said Holland-Bukit Panjang Town Council (HBPTC) in response to TODAY’s queries.
Water then seeped into the electrical distribution board. Power supply to the water pumps at the block was thus disconnected as part of the electrical system’s safety features, the council explained.
TODAY interviewed 10 affected residents who mostly said they felt frustrated or inconvenienced by the disruption.
Out of the 10, seven indicated that this was not the first time that a water disruption had occurred in their block.
Mr Hafiz Huzaifah, 33, said this was the third water disruption he had experienced after similar incidents in May 2022 and January 2023.
Most others had experienced two outages.
“It was really inconvenient for me as I needed to shower before going out, and my plans were affected,” said Mr Hafiz, referring to the incident last Sunday.
Other residents recalled going downstairs to collect water using pails, or observing their neighbours doing so.
Ms Ong said her own cooking plans were affected, and others sent pictures via Telegram of bottles of water that they had purchased.
Housewife Lina Mohamed, 34, said that her family had been lucky on Sunday as they had already showered and eaten breakfast before the disruption.
“But in January I was a lot less lucky,” said Ms Lina. “It happened past 7pm and we had just come back, so the inconvenience was a lot more.”